Community Renewal hosts
Maggie Lee Henson
Celebration of Caring
Several hundred attend riverfront festival
Click here to see the photo gallery!
For release: April 19, 2011
Several hundred area residents joined Community Renewal and sponsor Red Ball Oxygen on the Shreveport riverfront April 16 for the annual Maggie Lee Henson Celebration of Caring.
The fun event brought people and organizations together from many neighborhoods to celebrate our common bond of caring. Activities included a free picnic lunch, live music, games for children, face-painting, a magician, free pet photos and much more.
Dr. Thomas Pressly was honored with the Caring Angel Award, recognizing his caring for and service to others. Pressly founded Jambalaya Jubilee, a three-day retreat for children with rheumatic diseases. He also has a free monthly juvenile arthritis clinic at Shriners Hospital in Shreveport.
Three children were named winners of the first Celebration of Caring children’s coloring contest, out of 142 entries, with entries being displayed at the Barnwell Art Center.
The coloring contest was open to ages 4-8 and had fabulous prizes for the winners:
First place: A Playhut Luxury House that can hold 10 children
Second place: Crayola Color Explosion Glow Dome
Third place: Wham-O Wave Rider Slip 'N Slide
The annual event is named in honor of Maggie Lee Henson, one of two young people who died after a bus taking youth from First Baptist Church Shreveport to a summer camp crashed in 2009. Only 12 when she died, Maggie Lee had a profound impact on those around her with her caring and generous spirit.
“Maggie Lee from a young age was very demonstrative with her faith. She heard Jesus' words about loving other people and did it,” said her mother, Jinny Henson.
“Caring is contagious and there are opportunities everywhere for us to practice loving others as we love ourselves. The Celebration of Caring Event will hopefully spawn even more good deeds, because once you give sacrificially, expecting nothing in return, you are never the same. And that change can't help but change our city, country and world."
One purpose of the Celebration of Caring is to reinforce our common bond of caring for one another.
“When caring persons get connected with one another, we raise our own perception of our community as a good place to live. The more we become connected, the better our community becomes,” said Tom Watts, director of the Renewal Team for Community Renewal.
Sponsor Red Ball Oxygen funds and provides personnel who work with other volunteers to make the Celebration of Caring the best event it can be.
“Community Renewal does such important work in our city. From revitalizing neglected neighborhoods, to building parks, to helping those in need with a hand up, all of us at Red Ball Oxygen want to help them to succeed. Sponsoring the annual Celebration of Caring is but one small way we can help Community Renewal spread their philosophy of caring throughout our community,” said Monica Rogers, marketing and events manager for Red Ball.
Community Renewal International is a nonprofit effort to restore safe and healthy communities through caring relationships. Founded in 1994, Community Renewal reaches at-risk youth through Friendship Houses built in impoverished neighborhoods, strengthens education through the Adult Renewal Academy, partners with The Fuller Center for Housing and connects caring partners who turn their neighborhoods into safe havens of friendship and support.
Contact: David Westerfield, director of communications