By Ashley Rader
East Tennessee Christian Children’s Home and Academy will host the first Joyfest concert fundraiser to help fund programs and future growth at the academy.
Joyfest 2012 will be held on Saturday, Nov. 10, from 6-9 p.m. in the auditorium at T.A. Dugger Junior High School. The fundraiser will feature performances by No Name But His, the Fiddlin’ Carson Peters Band, Greater Glory and the East Tennessee State University Bluegrass Band.
ETCHA Director of Development Ron Marvel said the home was considering new fundraising options when it selected Joyfest.
“We are hoping it becomes an annual event,” Marvel said. “Not only is it a fundraiser for the academy, we hope it improves our visibility and makes people aware that we are here. It is also a good fit for the community. There is such a love of bluegrass in the region.”
Marvel said the home is not funded by the State of Tennessee, but relies solely on donations from corporations, individuals and churches to make up the operating budget.
All funds received from the concert will be used for the operating budget and will be put toward the goal of reopening a closed house on the ETCHA campus. Marvel said if the academy could reopen the residence, it would be able to accept more student-residents into the program.
“We have referrals that come in each week, and we have to say ‘no’ because we do not have the bed space,” Marvel said. “If we can open this existing house then our ‘nos’ would be less frequent.”
ETCHA has been a part of the Carter County community since 1946. The all-girls academy takes referrals from parents, counselors or social workers for at-risk children. After enrolling in the academy, the student-residents attend the on-campus education facility. Marvel said the students are taught from a Christ-centered curriculum and Biblical principals.
“Our student-residents go on to become productive, successful members of the community,” Marvel said. “We have a desire to do more for at-risk children. We can do more if we have more funding.”
Tickets for Joyfest are $7 for general seating and $10 for reserved seating. A limited number of reserved seats are still available, and a small number of tickets will be available at the door.
For tickets to Joyfest call 542-4423.
Sponsors for Joyfest are Barnes Exterminating, Interstate Graphics and DOTHERT Studio.