RISE will be hosting its inaugural Hot Air Balloon Festival on August 12 and 13 to fundraise and bring the community together. The festival will be held at the Forrest County Multi-Purpose Center and is free to the public.
Opening ceremonies will begin Friday, August 12, at 6 p.m. and will consist of a patriotic ceremony to salute our military and first responders, an airshow, a balloon glow, live music, and food trucks. Saturday morning will start early at 6 a.m. where the balloons will take to the skies (weather permitting) around Hattiesburg. The festival will continue all day, and it will include tethered rides, demonstrations, a kid’s corner, a petting zoo, vendors/art exhibit, live entertainment, and more.
More information about the event can be found at risenonprofit.org.
Located in Hattiesburg, RISE is a faith-based, nonprofit that has been helping individuals “rise” to their full potential by providing them with skills to succeed for the last 22 years. Previously known as Pinebelt Christian Women’s Job Corps, RISE was founded in 2001 to help women in the community who needed an extra boost to get back on their feet. In 2016, Executive Director Catherine Jorns joined the team and expanded the program to men as well.
RISE’s mission is to educate, encourage and empower men and women to RISE to self-sufficiency. The program consists of two phases: in-class education and mentorships. The first phase is to get the individual access to education. They also focus on financial literacy to help them understand how to best manage their money and offer career building skills.
The second phase is taking the steps towards the goals that the individual set in phase one. This is done through weekly (or daily) mentorships. RISE prides itself on being a “hand up, not a hand out program.” This is considered a major strength because it allows the individual to succeed and grow without stripping them of their dignity. Through education and mentorships, along with love and encouragement, these men and women are given the tools to build a successful life for themselves and their families.