Future Leaders youth group delights kids with Easter egg hunt

Published 12:11 am Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Future Leaders of Washington Parish youth group was busy the week of spring break in April.

The group entertained residents at Rest Haven Living Center with an Easter program. Master of ceremonies Roderick Robinson, the youngest member of the group, opened the program, followed by a devotion by Chas Smith and the reading of an Easter poem by Arielle Smith. Easter songs were sung by the group and the residents. Darrilyn Lee performed a liturgical dance and the president of the youth group, Kennedy Robertson, closed the program. The highlight of the day was a visit by the Easter Bunny, who gave out treats to the residents and took pictures. The bunny was compliments of Smiley’s Party Supplies and member Salarius Magee.

Next the group prepared for its Easter egg hunt at Dana Walker’s home. They gathered to decorate and stuff eggs and to make Easter baskets. Not only did they have fun decorating but they also discussed the true meaning of Easter. On March 29 the youth group and their parents, members of Project HOPE, staff of Cook-Richmond Funeral Home and the Compu Tech Institution of Franklinton, joined together in assisting the group to put on its first community service event — “Easter Egg Hunt: A Day of Fun with Family & Friends.” More than 75 kids and their families came to the event held at the Avenue U ballpark in Bogalusa. The children, ranging in age from 1 to 10 years old, enjoyed games, food, the egg hunt and music at the event. Also, each child took home a free picture with Easter Bunny, compliments of Cook-Richmond Funeral Home and Jhmarick Camp-bell.

This event taught the youth about giving back to the community through community service, and working together as a team pays off in the end.

Walker said, “It’s very challenging and it takes long hours, determination and dedication to give an event of this magnitude to the community. Oh, and of course, money.”

She continued, saying Project HOPE was blessed with monetary donations from businesses in the community, churches, private citizens and fundraisers. She noted that social networking is very important these days.

“Networking on Facebook has truly been instrumental in spreading the word on the events given by the organization,” she said. “And within the past year more former Bogalusans who are Facebook friends with our members have sent monetary donations to Project HOPE because they want to give back to their hometown.

“Project HOPE will continue to work with other active organizations in the Parish to make a difference in the lives of our youth,” Walker said. “We ask that anyone interested in their children in grades five through 12 joining the youth organization, or volunteering with Project HOPE or who would like to donate to the organization can contact me, Jamal Richmond or any member of Project HOPE at projecthope_bogalusa@yahoo.com or 732-9301.

“Together we can make a difference in our community.”