This month I had the opportunity to speak with Tonya Manion of ‘A New Leaf Inc.’, a non-profit located on 221 Tarlton Rd that provides foster care and respite services to/for children and families in the central Ohio area. Tonya shared a little bit about their organization, their mission and their needs.

“A New Leaf strives to ensure safety, permanency, and the well-being of children who enter the foster care system.” Tonya also established that A New Leaf has provided care and support services for children and families since 2003. “With the current opioid crisis that our country is experiencing, there is an extreme need for more foster families to support the numerous children that enter care on a daily basis. In 2017, more than 15,000 kids were in foster care and only 7,200 foster homes were available in our state.”

With that said, there are many ways that the people of Pickaway County area can help out the children of A New Leaf – and one of those ways is by donating to the local toy drive they host every year In December.  “We conduct an annual toy drive to help support our holiday party which is held at the Ohio Christian University every December. This party typically hosts 200+ children and adults. We are also actively recruiting foster parents since the amount of children coming into care is substantial. We do have a need to purchase recruiting materials to effectively spread our name in the communities (i.e. banners for high school football fields, marketing tools, etc.).” Tonya explained, before adding: “A difference can be made by locating quality families that are willing to support children who have experienced traumatic events in their young lives. Another way to make a difference is to actively promote the proactive services that foster parents create for children every day. The last difference that can be made to help our agency is to donate money and participate in our annual toy drive.”

As for funding, “Most of our funding is provided through our contracts with various county Children’s Services in the central Ohio area. Their funding is received through state, federal, and local monies. As a non-profit, we also rely on donations and our fundraising events.”

There are many ways to learn more about A New Leaf including: calling into the agency, checking out their Facebook page or by visiting our beautiful website. Supporters can also stay up to date about their agency by following them on their Instagram or Twitter pages!