Send announcements to The Loudoun Connection, 7913 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102, e-mail to loudoun@connectionnewspapers.com or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is two weeks before the event. Photos/artwork encouraged. For more information, call Jennifer Lesinski at 703-917-6454.

This free listing is reserved for activities and events that are open to the public at no or minimal cost.

The Center for Multicultural Human Services is seeking CHAMPS mentors to provide children of prisoners in Northern Virginia with friendship, recreational activities and constructive example. The next all-day training session is Feb. 26. Contact Ellen Klene at 703-533-3302, Ext. 107 or eklene@cmhs.org.

The Northern Virginia Family Service seeks foster families for child with special needs. Classes have begun at the Oakton NVFS office at 10455 White Granite Drive. The 9 a.m.-5 p.m. classes then run concurrent Saturdays ending Feb. 26. When completed, parents will be pre-certified to have a child with special needs placed in their homes. Call 703-533-9727 or smcallister@nvfs.org.

The Loudoun Museum is in need of volunteers to prepare for the new exhibition opening April 1:

* Carpenters and carpenter assistants begin work Feb. 22-April 1.

* Education program assistants needed for family program April 9 and for school programs throughout the month of April.

* Meeting assistants needed for historical symposium March 12.

* Special event assistants needed for the opening reception April 1.

Call 703-777-7427 or e-mail administrator@loudounmuseum.org.

The Loudoun Arts Council is calling for volunteers for its 2005 Designer Showhouse, which will be open to the public April 25-May 15. The 20-day event will be held in a Van Metre home located in Lansdowne on the Potomac community, just east of Leesburg. Volunteer opportunities including room docents, ticket and furniture sales assistants and directional and parking attendants. For more information, contact the Loudoun Arts Council at 703-777-7838 or info@loudounarts.org.

The Loudoun County MADD Chapter is seeking additional court monitors for Loudoun Traffic court program in which trained volunteers observe and gather data on DUI court proceedings, including arraignments, pretrial hearing, trials and sentencing. The data collected focuses on three prongs: to evaluate the courts, to track the offenders and to plot trends in punishment and case outcomes. Training is provided. Volunteer one day a week or one morning or afternoon a week. Leave a voice mail message on 703-771-8127 or send an e-mail to maddloudoun@aol.com.

Loudoun Interfaith Relief Inc., is seeking volunteers that can pick up food from local grocery stores in the Leesburg area. Drivers are needed Monday, Wednesday and Friday in the morning. Loudoun Interfaith Relief Inc. is a nonprofit food pantry that provides emergency food supplies to residents in need living in Loudoun County. Call 703-777-5911.

Opportunities, Alternatives & Resources (OAR) of Fairfax County Inc. is a nonprofit organization that helps offenders and ex-offenders break the cycle of crime. OAR of Fairfax provides services to Loudoun and Fairfax counties and is seeking volunteers to teach classes in the Loudoun County Work Release Center. Volunteer instructors will teach courses such as parenting, life skills, employability skills, work place skills, financial planning and conflict resolution. Call to enroll in spring training. Contact the volunteer department at 703-246-3033.

LINK, an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization, is seeking volunteers for its food-bank, assisting needy families in selecting five-day allotments of food items, to restock shelves and load food into family vehicles. Call Roberta at 703-450-4643.

Travelers Aid is seeking volunteers to serve as mobile guides and information desk staff at Washington Dulles International Airport. Volunteers provide access to agency social workers, airport information, directional services, transportation options, tourist information and more. Trained to be information experts, our volunteers welcome people to the Washington capital region and add a personal touch. We have a need for weekday evening, 6-9 p.m., information desk volunteers. Mobile guide scheduling is flexible. For more information about volunteer opportunities and upcoming training sessions contact Travelers Aid at 703-572-7350 or volunteer@mwaa.com.

Girl Scout Council of the NationÕs Capital is looking for

volunteers for a troop in Sterling Park. Contact the Girl Scout Council of the NationÕs Capital Field Director Lorrie Caudle at 703-777-5644 for more information.

Good Shepherd Alliance Inc. (GSA), an organization providing shelter to the homeless, is in need of lawyers with nonprofit experience and mentors for single men, women and families. The services of local electricians, painters, plumbers, carpenters, roofers, car mechanics and landscapers are needed to restore living spaces, vehicles and outdoor shelter areas. Software engineers and technicians are also needed to establish and maintain computer workstations at all shelter facilities. Physicians, dentists and counselors support residents living in crisis situations and many volunteers are needed to help at the Good Shepherd Alliance Thrift Store. To learn more about the Good Shepherd Alliance, contact executive director John Brothers at 703-433-2631 or visit www.loudounhomeless.org.

Volunteers are needed to deliver home-delivered meals and to assist in the Cafe at the Loudoun County Senior Center, 21060 Whitfield Place, Sterling. Anyone interested in volunteering for a couple of hours one day a week or once or twice a month, contact Erik Onate at 703-430-2397, Ext. 109.

Loudoun Heritage Farm Museum is seeking interested teens and adults to volunteer by becoming a tour guide or visitor services representative. Training is provided. Hours are flexible. The farm is located at Claude Moore Park in Sterling. Call Kara Koonce at 703-421-5322.

Loudoun County Community Corrections is looking for volunteers to serve as court assistants. Volunteers must be 18 years of age and pass a criminal background check. A commitment of one year at four hours a week requested. Duties include providing court coverage, performing financial interviews on indigent defendants, data entry, case compliance, case intakes and basic administrative duties. Training is provided but a knowledge of the court system is helpful. Contact Karen McQuaid, deputy director at 703-737-8519 or kmcquaid@loudoun.gov.

The Adult Foster Care Program enables people with mental disabilities to grow and become more independent through the interaction and routines of family life. To help meet the growing housing needs of people with mental disabilities, Loudoun County Mental Retardation Services is seeking to recruit new families to the program and increase the number of placements. Foster families receive a monthly stipend and are provided with ongoing training and in-home support. Contact the Loudoun County Community Services Board at 703-777-0377 or visit www.loudoun.gov/mhmr/afc/.

Odyssey Health Care, a national hospice in the Northern Virginia area, is looking for people with an interest in serving the terminally ill hospice patients and their families. Volunteers offer companionship, friendly visits, running errands, household duties, and/or bereavement services. Other duties include answering phones, translators, or hospice community awareness. Training is provided. Contact Jerri Hays at 703-821-9200.

Loudoun County's Retired & Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) is seeking volunteers to join its program. RSVP provides a wide range of opportunities for individuals, age 55 and over, to utilize their experience and skills in the community. To request an information packet and enrollment form, contact the RSVP office at 703-777-0505.

The Aspect Foundation is looking for host families in the west Fairfax County and Loudoun County areas for the coming school year. Host families offer room, board, and friendship and show the visiting students around. Students from South America and Asia are still available for placement. If you are interested in hosting an exchange student please call Kathleen or Robert Rawls at 703-433-0362.

The Therapeutic Foster Care Program at For Children's Sake of Virginia is recruiting caring families interested in providing foster care in Loudoun, Fairfax, Arlington and Prince William counties, and is seeking individuals or families to provide stability and support within a safe, nurturing home to foster children. Call 703-817-9890.

Loudoun Volunteer Services (LVS) announces its volunteer-match Web site, a service of the Points of Light Foundation, corporately sponsored by Dominion Power. The Web site is aimed at both volunteers, who are seeking to find opportunities best suited for their particular interest or skill, and organizations seeking a way to publicly advertise their volunteer opportunities. To register for this free service, visit www.loudoun.gov/pio/volunteer.htm and click on "register your organization's volunteer opportunities," or to volunteer click on "looking for volunteer opportunities." Contact Lisa Rose at 703-777-0113.