Alexandria News Briefs

Alexandria News Briefs

<b>Energy Assistance Program</b>

The City of Alexandria is accepting applications for the Virginia Energy Assistance Program through Monday, Nov. 14. Financial assistance is available to eligible low-income families to help pay for the primary fuel used to heat their home. Families who receive public assistance, food stamps or Supplemental Security Income are automatically eligible for the program, but they must submit an application before the closing date, Nov. 14, 5 p.m. Income and resources of all household members must be verified. Household benefits will be determined by mid-December. All applicants will receive written notice of eligibility and benefit level. Benefits will be based on household size, income, and the type of fuel used to the heat the home. Payments will be made directly to the energy source provider under most circumstances. Eligible households may also apply for emergency assistance for the repair or replacement of defective or inoperable heating equipment beginning Tuesday, Nov. 1. For more information on the Virginia Energy Assistance Program or to receive an application, call the Office of Community Services at 703-838-0971 or 703-838-0901; or visit the Department of Human Resources, 2525 Mount Vernon Ave., Monday through Friday between, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

<b>City Seeks Holiday Sponsorship

</b>The City of Alexandria’s Department of Human Services needs help in making the holiday season brighter for participants of the Sponsor a Family, Sponsor a Senior, Sponsor a Teen and Sponsor a Foster Child programs. Individuals, families and groups can help by purchasing holiday gifts for youngsters and senior citizens, and delivering them directly to the recipients before the holidays or to the Human Services Center, 2525 Mount Vernon Ave., by Thursday, Dec. 15, for social workers to distribute. The programs also request gift certificates for teenagers as well as grocery gift cards for families. Gift certificates for clothing will also be accepted for families and individuals who are evacuees from the hurricane devastation on the Gulf Coast. Volunteers will be needed to help receive and sort bundles of gifts Wednesday, Dec. 14, and Thursday, Dec. 15, 9 a.m.-8 p.m. at the Human Services Center. Drivers are needed to deliver gifts to Alexandria families Friday, Dec. 16. For more information, call Suzanne Kratzok, Coordinator of Community Resources for the Alexandria Department of Human Services, at 703-838-0768, or e-mail

<b>King Street Businesses Support BID

</b>The Old Town Improvement District Steering Committee welcomes the support from businesses, commercial property owners, residents, tenants and organizations on and along King Street. Owners of the supporting businesses say BID will bring more retail to Old Town, and they want to participate in the beautifying and revitalizing of the area. For a complete listing of supporters, visit

<b>City Celebrates Adoption Month

</b>The City of Alexandria celebrates National Adoption Awareness Month with a public information session on Foster Care and Adoption, Monday, Nov. 14, Beatley Library, 5005 Duke St. Residents will receive information from Alexandria’s social workers and current foster care and adoptive parents on how they can become those parents. The city will recognize National Adoption Day Saturday, Nov. 19, with a private reception and adoption ceremony, not open to the public, 10 a.m.-noon, Alexandria Courthouse, 520 King St. Seven children will be adopted at the ceremony, bringing the number of finalized adoptions in the city in 2005 to 22. The city is also seeking Virginia residents — married or single, homeowners or renters — who are willing to accept infants, toddlers, teens, pregnant teenage girls or girls with infants into their homes. Both English and Spanish-speaking parents are needed. There are about 220 children in foster care. A monthly stipend helps cover the child’s expenses, and Medicaid provides health care. Call Karen Chaudhry of the city’s Department of Human Services at 703-838-0891.

<b>Alexandria Vintage Jewelry Sale

</b>The city hosts an Ornament and Vintage Jewelry Sale, Friday, Nov. 11, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The sale will take place at the Mount Ida Avenue entrance of the Human Services Center, 2525 Mount Vernon Avenue. Proceeds go to the Emergency Services Fund for The city’s Office of Aging and Adult Services to benefit the local seniors. Social workers use the Fund to pay for the needs of seniors when no other source of funding is available. Needs include high-cost prescription drugs not covered by insurance, temporary housing, durable medical equipment, clothing and food. All of the jewelry for the fundraiser was donated to the Office of Aging and Adult Services. Call the Office at 703-838-0920.

<b>City Schedule of Services for Thanksgiving

</b>The City of Alexandria government offices, Alexandria Public Schools, all city libraries and all City of Alexandria recreation centers will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 24, and Friday, Nov. 25, in observance of Thanksgiving Day. The Treasury and Revenue Divisions of the Finance Department will be closed Nov. 24, 25 and 26. The Charles Houston, Cora Kelly, William Ramsay, Nannie J. Lee and Mount Vernon recreation centers will be open Nov. 25, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., and Chinquapin Park Recreation Center will be open 6 a.m.-6 p.m. There will be no DASH bus service Nov. 24. The Alexandria Police Department will suspend enforcement of parking restrictions at metered spaces as well as time restrictions in residential permit parking districts and other areas with signed parking time limits Nov. 24 and 25. State offices in Alexandria will close Nov. 23 at 1 p.m., and remain closed Nov. 24 and 25. Residential refuse and recycling will be collected on the regularly scheduled day during the week, without delays.

On Nov. 25 the city will hold its Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony, 7 p.m., Market Square, 301 King St. For more information on the ceremony call 703-883-4686.