The Shinnston News & Harrison County Journal has named

Helen Jones as October’s Citizen of the Month, a program sponsored by Thomas R. Williams, Premier Wealth Partners, a financial advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.

By TRINA RUNNER

News & Journal Staff Writer

Way back in 1933, there was a baby being born this very month who would go on to change the world, partly because of the man who delivered her.  Helen Jones was delivered by her grandfather on that day, and, as she would later learn, he was part of a long line of people in her family that would put others first.  That legacy has lived on in Jones, and today, at 81 years old, there’s no sign of slowing down in sight.

Jones was delivered into the world in a small bedroom in her home.  It is no surprise then, that decades later, she would be dedicating her life to making sure others have a home to enjoy.

As the director of the Open Door and the Homeless Coalition, Jones has made it her life’s purpose to empower the homeless and find the resources for them to soar in our communities.

“I am being blessed more than they are at the pleasure I receive from seeing them work and become fellow citizens,” says Jones.

As a result of her fundraising and volunteer work, the formerly homeless are gaining self-confidence and opportunities to contribute to society.

With great humility, Jones has been celebrated over the years for her contributions.  She has won numerous awards including WV Volunteer of the Year for Lifetime Achievement, presented to her by Governor Manchin.

As much as she appreciates the awards, she appreciates even more the ability to continue working with those in need.  She dedicates her time and resources to encouraging others and that has given her the greatest joy, in addition to her family and former students.  Her works have inspired former students to also contribute to the Homeless Coalition, and it is their praise that reinforces her gratitude for the choices she has made to serve.

Jones has served in many leadership positions including Fort New Salem, Pricketts Fort, and the Coalition for the Homeless.  She continues to volunteer with Harrison County Schools and has received many awards for her teaching.  She won first place in the nation for her economics lesson and was flown to California to receive the award for national recognition.  But it is her work with the homeless that makes her light up.  She uses her gifts to fundraise and advocate for them and considers them to be among her friends and neighbors.

“ I have had such a wonderful and fulfilling life,” says Jones, and who could ask for more than that?

 

HELEN JONES         Photo by Buffington
HELEN JONES Photo by Buffington