The Ben D. Johnson Educational Center will have the “Let’s Clean Up Our Neighborhood” event on Saturday, Nov. 21 from 9am – 12pm.

The clean-up includes MLK Dr. and North Street, from University Pkwy to Ben Johnson Drive and the perimeter of Natchitoches Thomas Apartments. The area will be divided into 4 sections, each with its own team and Team Leader. The teams will work together to pick up trash and clean up the sidewalks. Legacy Café students and Staff will prepare lunch for the participants following the event.

The goals of this event are to beautify our community, engage residents and encourage participate in activities at the BDJ Center and Legacy Café, and to promote the “Continue the Legacy” End of Year Campaign. With the support of the City of Natchitoches, who will be providing tools and supplies, the BDJ Center hopes this will be a start of a renewed West Natchitoches.

The BDJ Center operates the Legacy Youth Workforce Development Program for youth (17- 24) with barriers to getting and keeping a job. The students receive job training and life skills to empower them to lead independent lives. The “Continue the Legacy” Campaign will support the efforts of the BDJ Center to assist as many students as possible. In order to qualify for federal funds, students must meet certain criteria (s) such as single parent or pregnant, substance abuse, low reading or math skills, in the criminal justice system or foster care. Many youths who wish to participate in the LYWDP and need the training, unfortunately do not meet federal funding requirements. The establishment of a Student Scholarship Fund will allow more students to benefit from this much needed program. The largest fundraising efforts will be on #GivingTuesday which will be Dec. 1.

From the President and Founder, Claire Prymus, “We are pleased to support young people in Natchitoches as they pursue sustainable employment, a better life for themselves and their families, and become respected contributing citizens in our community.”

The Ben D. Johnson Educational Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with a mission to build community in Natchitoches and give access to social and economic success for all its residents.