Educators play a vital role in students’ lives. Sometimes, educators even find themselves playing the role of parent or guardian to their students for the academic year they are in their classrooms. The Livingston Parish Retired Teachers Association partners and volunteers with local organizations to give their community a mother’s touch.
One organization Livingston Parish RTA regularly supports and donates to is the Geaux Seven chapter of the Blue Star Mothers of America, Inc. The chapter is based in Central, LA. Blue Star Mothers of America support active-duty military service personnel by collecting and delivering care packages for our deployed troops. Community and local businesses partner with Blue Star Mothers of America to host supply drives and donate funds for mailing care packages.
“A representative will come speak at one meeting, and the next month we bring donations,” explains Livingston Parish RTA president Charmaine Vernon.
Livingston Parish RTA collected donations at their November 2022 meeting, which was held at the Denham Springs/Walker Library. Blue Star Mothers of America provides a list of items for members to donate, including personal items, snacks and other miscellaneous items.
“We love to do this,” Charmaine says. “We have a good relationship with the organization. We love to support our current military.”
Another organization Livingston Parish RTA recently began partnering with is Mighty Moms. In 2010, a group of mothers in Livingston Parish formed Mighty Moms after learning of children in the community who were experiencing food insecurity. Food insecurity can be defined as inconsistent access or the inability to afford adequate food.
They launched the Full Tummy program to make sure these students have food on weekends or when school is not in session. Mighty Moms prepares packs of snacks and food and works with the Livingston Parish School System and guidance counselors to distribute the packs to students in need.
“One of our members (Jan Benton) currently serves on the board,” says Charmaine. “When she spoke to us briefly about her volunteer work with Mighty Moms, we were eager and happy to add Mighty Moms as one of our projects.”
Unlike traditional food pantries, Mighty Moms try to only request items that they know students want or need. For their February 2023 meeting, they requested that Livingston Parish RTA members donate crackers.
Along with engaging programs like books swaps and learning how to attract birds with Jane Patterson, Livingston Parish RTA makes sure to include opportunities to give back to the community they served in their Unit meetings. Their service is impactful in many ways and shines a positive light on the retired educator community. As they say on their Facebook page, “they may be retired, but they still have class.”
Livingston Parish RTA meets on the second Monday of each month. Their meeting dates can be found on the LRTA website or their Facebook page.
For more information about Livingston Parish RTA, contact Mrs. Charmaine Vernon at (225) 235-8555.
Interested in joining your local Unit? Click here to find a retired educator community near you.