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Youths of the Year vital to community

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The Boys and Girls Clubs of North Central Louisiana found a way to honor some of the many amazing children that attend the club.

The club announced the Youths of the Year during the Youth of the Year Reception Thursday at the Lincoln Parish Library Events Center.

The winners were Carlasia Moore, 11, of Cypress Springs Elementary; Aaron Wright, 12, of Ruston Junior High School; and DeAndria Moss, 17, of Ruston High School.

DeAndria will represent Lincoln Parish at the state level Youth of the Year competition.

Finalists included Z’Kalia Holland, Kensley Sutton, Josiah Whitaker, JaRaylon Burks, Jaidon Willis, Nashara South, Shatiyanna Dunn, D’Anthony Lyons and Jonathan Thompson.

Carlasia said the club has taught her to be a strong, independent young lady who always does things she sets her mind to.

Aaron said when he joined the club he was a shy, modest individual. Now he is a leader, mentors and continues to become friends with new people.

DeAndria said she will continue to use the platform she created while being a part of the club to help the community and grow as a person.

Chief Executive Officer Eldonta Osborne said this award process is not a competition, but a program to highlight all the children in the club.

“All of our children have done wonderful things,” he said. “We don’t want this to be a competition. This is a celebration of what we have accomplished.”

From what the children who won said during their acceptance speeches, the club has done a tremendous job of helping raise Lincoln Parish youth.

The annual event showcases several club members who have displayed excellence, improvement and leadership in the club.

For some children, like Carlasia and Aaron, it’s a confidence boost to help them become future leaders.

For those like DeAndria, it’s a way to create a brand and use that brand to help others in need.

The Ruston Daily Leader applauds all of the children of the Boys and Girls Clubs of North Central Louisiana and their accomplishments.

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