CHESTER — While the Yesteryear program — where students were brought into a central location to learn about the lifestyle and skills of generations past — was discontinued by the Meigs County Council on Aging this year, the Chester-Shade Historical Association has taken it over.
Due to funding cuts and the necessity to eliminate some programming, the Meigs County Council on Aging recently eliminated the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) from its agenda of activities.
The Chester-Shade Historical Association has long been active with volunteers and financial assistance in the Yesteryear program and felt it was too good a program to discontinue. Over the past 10 years, the Historical Association has donated $1,000 to the Yesteryear program for use in purchasing materials and the cost of transporting students by bus to the program site. A few weeks ago, the Association decided to assume the leadership and take on the financial obligations of the traditional six-week activity to be offered to all fifth graders in Meigs County schools.
The program will continue to be held at the Bradford Church of Christ activity building, with the children being bused to that location. Skills of yesteryear, many now becoming lost arts, will be taught by volunteers — many of whom have shared their skills with local children over the past 25 years of its existence.
Yesteryear got under way on March 27 and will continue two days a week through May 21. A total of 280 students will be learning about the life skills of their ancestors — including everything from making candles to weaving baskets — in the program taught by 30 volunteers.