Lowndes CPC receives Award of Excellence

Published 9:44 pm Tuesday, August 8, 2023

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The Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education recognized the work of the Lowndes County Children’s Policy Council (CPC) on Aug. 1 by honoring the council with the Award of Excellence.

The Lowndes council, made up of state, regional, and local organizations which partner to serve the county’s children and youth, was one of ten county councils recognized at the State Children’s Policy Council Conference.

According to CPC chairman District Judge Adrian Johnson, this year marks the third time the Lowndes council has received the award for its outstanding service to the youth and children of Lowndes County.

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“It is given to children’s policy councils that go above and beyond in their service to the children and families in their counties,” Johnson said. “They recognize the accomplishments of different children’s policy councils, and we receive the award because of our efforts through Character in Action, highlighting the positive aspects of good character and our awarding of the ‘Big John’ Williams Memorial Scholarship Fund.”

Liletta Jenkins, director of community outreach and engagement for the Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education, explained why the Lowndes council has earned recognition for their efforts.

“They received the award for the outstanding work they have done to improve literacy in their communities through Governor Ivy’s Alabama Campaign for Grade Level Reading initiatives and their efforts to inspire and collaborate with others to improve the lives of children and families in their respective communities and their county,” Jenkins said.

According to Jenkins, the Lowndes CPC accomplishes many great things, but their work to encourage good character among students is what earns them the award, time after time.

“What stands out to us the most was their work with the Character in Action Program,” she said. “It highlights the positive accomplishments of Lowndes County students. They also partner with the River Region United Way to bring the Dolly Parton Imagination Library to Lowndes County.”

In addition to those efforts, Johnson noted that the CPC partners with Lowndes County Public Schools Head Start program and is currently working with the school district to outfit a mobile library to take reading opportunities right into children’s neighborhoods.

“We’re working with our education partners, working to advance the effort to meet education needs for our youngest students,” Johnson said.

To date, the council has awarded $18,000 to graduating seniors through the “Big John” Williams Memorial Scholarship Fund. Jenkins said the group is the first CPC in Alabama to host a scholarship program.

“This is something that hasn’t been done before,” Jenkins said. “And so, with the children’s policy council, the goal is to bring partners together to devise plans and ways to improve the lives of children and families. And [the Lowndes CPC] is doing that and they are doing it very well.”