The Way Station Inc. has named Chaney Nezbeth its new Executive Director. Nezbeth assumed the position following the retirement of Vicki Ritterspach, who served as executive director since 2010. Vicki will remain involved and will serve on the board of directors. Nezbeth most recently served as a development officer with the Youngstown State University Foundation. She has a strong nonprofit background previously working with Habitat for Humanity in Salem and she is currently serving on the board of directors with Junior Achievement of the Mahoning Valley. The Way Station introduced Chaney at their annual Simply DeVine Gala fundraising dinner held at The Links at Firestone Farms in Columbiana over the weekend.

The organization offers a six-week, 12-session, Jobs Ready-Set-Go program which provides training in résumé writing, online job search, interviews, workplace integrity and communication. Among the biggest advantages to the program are networking and connections. Area business owners and elected officials attend classes and meet with the students to help them identify their characteristics and traits that would be beneficial to a business. The students start to see the value they can bring to a career that they never considered before. Jobs Ready-Set-Go boasts a 68% success with usually eight to 10 students in a class and is held at the Columbiana location or at the county courthouse in Lisbon and the East Liverpool courthouse.

To help break the cycle of generational poverty, The Way Station begun its Pathways to Independence program October of 2018. Pathways to Independence feature a curriculum of classes to help people build their resources to get themselves out of poverty. Participants must commit to a year-long program that includes other incentives as they progress. Applicants are restricted to Columbiana County residents. Candidates must have a child in the home and fall within 150% of the poverty level. The organization will also help connect residents with local and county resources.

In addition to helping people get a fresh start, the DeVine Thrift Store offers reduced price clothing and household items for sale. They also provide emergency assistance kits, diaper distribution and monthly food distributions at both the Columbiana and East Liverpool locations.

The Way Station’s mission for over 30 years has been to reflect the compassion of Jesus to individuals and families who are struggling with poverty or joblessness by helping them to find full-time work and be self-sufficient. Their programming is funded by donations, The DeVine Thrift Stores, the occasional grant and the proceeds from The Simply DeVine Gala & Auction.

The DeVine Thrift Stores are located at 769 Springfield Rd, Columbiana OH, open Monday – Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Wednesday 9 am – 5 p.m. with half off all items starting at 6 – 8 p.m. and at 125 w 5th St., East Liverpool OH, open Tuesday-Friday 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Both locations are open to the public and accept donations of your good and usable items. To learn more about their programs or if you are interested in volunteering, please contact The Way Station at 330-482-5072.