Way Station Marks Decade, Expansion in Liverpool

EAST LIVERPOOL, Ohio – The Way Station is celebrating 10 years of helping the needy at its downtown location.

Members of city council and the Southern Columbiana County Regional Chamber of Commerce visited the nonprofit’s office at 125 W. Sixth St. on Thursday to mark the anniversary.

The Way Station will mark 35 years in Columbiana County next month, said Chaney Nezbeth, executive director. The organization was started in Columbiana and maintains locations there and in East Palestine.

With its many services and classes, Nezbeth said The Way Station is “moving every stumbling block out of your way.”

The organization offers a range of ways to help clients get assistance with basic nutrition, household items, emotional support, job training and emergency assistance.

Some programs are funded through the county Jobs and Family Services office while others depend upon donations and grant funding. The agency’s three retail stores, which are open to the public, fund about half of operations, according to Nezbeth.

Among its many services is a pregnancy prevention program for girls from fifth through 12th grade.

For those with children, a diaper distribution has met the needs of more than 300 children in the past year, providing more than 600,000 diapers since its inception. This program is not based on financial need.

The Pathway to Independence program is designed to help families get back on their feet and is available to Columbiana County residents with children under the age of 19 who meet certain income guidelines. 

Classes, weekly mentoring for encouragement, gift cards, gas and other financial incentives are offered to participants as they accomplish goals.

The Jobs: Ready-Set-Go program is a free hands-on course that helps participants become job-ready by teaching them what employers look for in an employee, how to write a résumé and through the interview process, integrity in the workplace and more.

One of the newer offerings is Transition to Triumph, a free program offering realistic life skills training to help participants re-enter the community after incarceration or military service. There are connections to mental health, addiction and other treatment professionals.

Clothing and food distribution constitute a large portion of the organization’s activities, with food provided annually for more than 2,500 people. More than 30,000 items of clothing were given away or sold at reduced prices last year to low-income families.

Along with heralding 10 years in the city on Thursday, Nezbeth said the organization was also celebrating the expansion of the downtown store into a third adjacent storefront on West Fifth Street, located in the same building, which is being purchased by The Way Station.

The organization launched a $150,000 campaign to purchase the building and has raised $115,000 thus far, Nezbeth said. 

A dental health van and a mammogram van make regular visits to the downtown location for public screenings.

For information on The Way Station, including how to donate or become a volunteer, go to www.thewaystationinc.org  or call 330 482 5072.

Pictured at top: The ribbon was cut Thursday at The Way Station in East Liverpool, celebrating the non-profit’s decade in the city as well as expansion of its retail store at the West Fifth Street building. Shown doing the honors are (from left): Marcus Trellaine, president, Southern Columbiana County Regional Chamber of Commerce; Troy Chisom, chamber vice president; Mark Blackburn, The Way Station board of directors; Chaney Nezbeth, The Way Station executive director; Christine Cianni, store manager; Tammy Blackburn, site director; city Councilman John Mercer; city Councilman Tom Beagle.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.