Doll’s House to ‘bring in the fall’ with annual dinner on Thursday

Published 7:41 pm Saturday, October 15, 2016

The Doll’s House is bringing in the fall season at its fifth annual benefit dinner Thursday with a menu filled with holiday favorites.

“We’ve got ham and dressing and sweet potato casserole,” said Stephanie Turner, who shares executive director duties at the not-for-profit women’s rehabilitation center with her husband, Johnnie. “We always bring the holiday season in. We bring in the fall.”

Dinner will be catered by Mitchell’s Special Events & Catering and prepared by chef Ken Dixon.

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The event will be from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Lincoln Civic Center, 1096 Beltline Drive NE. Tickets are $30 and available at the door or by calling the Turners at 601-291-8757 or 601-519-3546.

Churches and WMU groups are decorating the tables with a fall theme, and businesses that sponsored tables are doing the same.

The evening promises to be a great time for fellowship.

“It’s the community getting involved helping women in transition,” Turner said.

This year, the event will focus on the “dolls” — the eight women and one young girl who are residents at the Turners’ center. The Doll’s House is set up so the Turners can disciple women through the process of “deliverance, healing and empowerment,” Turner said.

It offers assistance to women in transition in life, especially those who are homeless, as they move from dependency and abusive relationships into self-sufficient lifestyles, she said.

The Turners also help with child reunification, as is the case with the young girl now staying with her mother at Doll’s House.

The dolls — the women of Doll’s House — will tell their story Thursday night.

“Everything is totally centered around the dolls, the ladies, this year,” Turner said. “There will be some amazing God stories.”

The stories these women share with the Turners break their hearts, but it also encourages them that they are doing what they were called to do.

“It’s nothing less than miraculous,” she said. “It makes us know that we’re doing the right thing.”

The silent auction is always a big hit, she said, and this year they’re adding a new twist. In addition to the regular donated items, they’ll be featuring art from the Doll’s House residents. They’ve been working with Ava Jane Newell at The Art Barn and will have pieces included in the auction, Turner said.

Donations from businesses and individuals are still needed. Anyone who wants to donate an item can call the Turners for pickup.

Turner is expecting to serve more than 300 people at the fundraiser this year, which would be about the same as 2015’s dinner. She has faith that all the tickets will be sold and money raised to benefit their program.

“Whoever is going to be there will be there and we just know that they’re going to get a blessing,” she said.

In the five years they’ve been open, dozens of women have come through the program, which also includes a farm with chickens, gardens and even a pig.

But besides helping the women at Doll’s House, the Turners also help the community with emergency food or assistance.

As soon as the dinner is over Thursday, they’ll get back to work filling boxes for their annual Thanksgiving giveaway. Last year, they gave out 462 boxes, which are filled with items needed to make a Thanksgiving meal for a family.

“We went from 60 boxes the first year to 100 and something the next year,” she said.

Donations are needed to fill more boxes.

“We’re just knowing that God will bless,” she said.