"Shelter in the Storm": a safe place to discuss inclusion of

gays in Christian churches June 26 from 5-7 p.m. at Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 6201 Dunrobbin Drive, Bethesda. Call 301-229-3770.

Strathmore seeks local performers in the metro area to apply for auditions. These auditions will identify performers for concerts and festivals presented by Strathmore throughout the 2005-2006 season. Interested musicians should send a package, including a CD, biography, and performance history of the last 18 months, to the attention of the Strathmore Local Performer Auditions, Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, MD 20852. Packages should be postmarked no later than Monday, June 20.

Artists selected from this application will be contacted for live auditions at the Music Center at Strathmore, Room 402, Monday, July 11, Tuesday, July 12 and Friday, July 15.

Musicians of all ages and musical interests are invited to submit materials. Call 301-581-5237 or visit

Two new facilitator trainings will be held in July for the Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Study Circles Program.

Study Circles is a dialogue program operating in MCPS, with a focus on understanding barriers to student achievement and parent involvement. These roundtable dialogues help diverse groups of parents, teachers, and students form relationships and develop trust; address issues of race, culture, and student achievement; and create strategies for communication and collaborative action.

Participants in facilitator trainings receive instruction in multicultural and group process skills specific to Study Circles, a certificate of completion, and a stipend when they facilitate a full study circle.

An orientation for those interested in being trained will be held Wednesday, June 29, 6:30-7:30 p.m., in the auditorium of the Carver Educational Services Center in Rockville.

Participants may choose one of two trainings. The first training will be offered over a two-day period Tuesday, July 12, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., and Wednesday, July 13, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The second will be offered over three days Saturday, July 23, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tuesday, July 26, 6-9 p.m.; and Wednesday, July 27, 6-9 p.m. Call 301-279-3455, e-mail, or go to /departments/studycircles/getinvolved.shtm.

The Jewish Social Service Agency (JSSA)'s Newcomer Resettlement program, offering intensive resettlement services to Jewish refugees from the Former Soviet Union and Iran, needs volunteers to teach English to new immigrants. This skill is required to pass the U.S. naturalization test and achieve citizenship, and needed to find jobs leading to economic self-sufficiency. Free training and materials are provided to all volunteers, who also receive ongoing support from JSSA staff. Contact Nina Sznurman at 301-770-5120.

The Volunteer Mentoring Project for the Montgomery County Housing Opportunities Commission Family Self-Sufficiency Program (FSS) is seeking volunteer mentors. Mentors give four hours a month to help low-income adult housing residents achieve their goals towards economic self-sufficiency. Mentors play an important role in guiding and motivating residents as they work toward developing job skills through education and job training. Mentors need to be at least 25- years-old and able to make a commitment to the program for at least one year. Program staff provide mentor training and ongoing supervision. Call 301-929-5660, if interested in other volunteer opportunities in the Montgomery County area, contact the Montgomery County Volunteer Center at 240-777-2600.

SPARK, Single Parents Raising Kids, is a non-profit, all volunteer organization designed to support single parent families through social, family, and educational activities. Any parent who is single, separated, divorced, widowed, or never married and has at least one child under the age of 18 is eligible to join. There is no time commitment required. Members can choose each month the activities that suit their interests and schedules. Dues are $25 per year. Prospective members can join after attending a one-hour info session— children are welcome. Call 301-598-6395 or visit