Chestnut Mountain Ranch’s faith-based initiative supports children and families in need.
You’ve probably seen the “foster families needed” signs posted around Morgantown. West Virginia’s foster care system is stretched thin: Our state has the highest number of children in foster care per capita and not enough families to support them. Long-term care is an even bigger challenge—only about 20% continue fostering after two years.
But Chestnut Mountain Ranch, a Morgantown-based nonprofit that provides basic needs, education, and spiritual guidance to vulnerable children and families, wants to change this. They’ve established a new ministry—Chestnut Mountain Village, or the Village, for short—entirely devoted to this cause.
The Village takes a practical approach that’s been proven to increase recruitment and retention of foster families across the United States. Essentially, they guide churches through the process of becoming Family Advocacy Ministries and creating “Care Communities”—church volunteer groups that provide food, clothing, transportation, and much more to children and families in need.
“We provide training, guidebooks, videos, and technology tools that give churches step-by-step methods to creating Care Communities,” says Greg Clutter, the Village’s Director of Foster Care Initiatives. “Multiple churches have adopted our program.” cmvwv.org