Children’s Policy Council hear community effort updates

Published 3:56 pm Monday, February 6, 2023

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The Lowndes County Children’s Policy Council met at the Courthouse on Feb. 1 to hear updates on community activities that are helping the area’s children.

District Judge Adrian Johnson delivered news that cooperative efforts of the council and its partners supplied Christmas gifts to all youths in the county’s foster care system and helped provide presents for children of families enrolled in the Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngers (HIPPY) program.

“I want to tell everyone that helped us collect gifts for foster children, thank you very much,” Johnson said. “We were able to get Christmas gifts for all foster children and to just about get all the things on their lists. We had several $1,000 gift cards donated and we were able to give funds to families to help them get some things children needed. Our social workers were able to get gifts out to children in advance of Christmas to let them know we love them and care about them.”

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Johnson said some foster children had been adopted and reduced the number of youths in the foster system.

“We hope to transition more foster children back into relatives’ homes,” Johnson said. “That’s our goal, to reunite children with families or a family member. We are blessed in Lowndes County to have a lot of family members that stepped in and usually placing children in the foster care system is a last resort.”

Paulette Miller with the “Class of 76” Scholarship Committee provided updates on the upcoming “Big John” Williams Scholarship Golf Tournament scheduled for April 28 at Lagoon Park Golf Course.

“We had about 50 golfers last year,” Miller said. “We are shooting for 100 this year.”

Petrey Wholesale and Pepsi agreed to sponsor the tournament, Miller said, and organizers plan to sell advertising to help with fundraising.

In other business, the council:

  • Heard information on Lowndes County Pre-K registration at Jackson-Steele and Fort Deposit Elementary Schools;
  • Received a status report from Tara Green regarding Lowndes County Public School’s spelling bee winners, upcoming basketball tournaments, high school baseball and softballs season kickoffs, elementary track teams, spring testing, after-school programs, dual enrollment classes, career tech partnerships, and the system’s mobile library;
  • Learned about upcoming Fatal Vision events at Lowndes Academy on Feb. 22 and The Calhoun School on March 15;
  • Were invited to share information about scholarships and grants available through the Central Alabama Community Foundation;
  • Recognized Lowndes Academy senior Harley Hooper for winning the Distinguished Young Women of Alabama essay contest;
  • Were reminded the deadline to apply for The “Big John” Scholarship is March 31;
  • Heard about Lowndes County Head Start’s Fatherhood program activities; and
  • Were encouraged to ask high school students to register for Alabama History Day by Feb. 13.

The next council meeting will take place on April 5 at 3 p.m. in the Lowndes County Courtroom.