With Help from Community and HLC, Bridge Ministry of Acadiana Puts Final Touches on Basketball Court


Lafayette, Louisiana – WEBWIRE – Wednesday, March 26, 2014

When the Bridge Ministry of Acadiana envisioned new digs for their program, there was one item on their wish list from the start.
 
“A basketball court was always something we wanted to try to make happen,” Jennifer Reynaud, Executive Director at Bridge, said. “Kids love sports, but it’s also a great space for so many other things.”
 
That’s where the Healthy Living Club came in. While planning for their new facility, the staff and volunteers at Bridge got word of a new grant from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation. Several area organizations, including Kiwanis Club of Lafayette Foundation and the Picard Center, were pulling together to apply for the grant.
 
“We heard that HLC was getting started so we connected with them to see if we could be a part,” Reynaud said. “Since Bridge is located in one of the focused neighborhoods, everything fit together.”
 
Along with a grant from the Stuller Family Foundation, funding from Healthy Living Club let Bridge build the court alongside their new facility at 512 N. University. Now, a year and a half later, everything is coming together for Bridge. The first two phases of their new facilities are complete, and at the end of the month they’ll accept a donation from the neighborhood association to put the finishing touches on the court.
 
“The neighborhood has gotten together to help pay for the lines on the court,” Reynaud said. “The money is very much appreciated, but what’s really exciting is that our community sees what Bridge has done and want to be a part of it.  The neighborhood association hosts fundraisers and collects dues to fund their groups and help with projects like this one.”
 
Bridge’s new facilities include one building for the youth on a two acre piece of land with a covered basketball court, a vegetable garden, fruit trees, playground, and open green space.
 
For Reynaud and her colleagues at Bridge Ministry, help with their new facilities from organizations like the neighborhood association and HLC are about more than funding.
 
 “The added space both in building and outside open the doors to so many possible new opportunities for the neighborhood,” Reynaud said. “But it’s about more than that. Their giving reminds us all what it truly means to help and support our neighbors.”
 
Bridge Ministry of Acadiana is a partner in the Healthy Living Club, a first-of-its-kind concept in Lafayette. The goal of the Healthy Living Club is to encourage families in the Lafayette area to make healthy living choices, including better eating choices and adopting an active lifestyle through exercise and mental stimulation. To learn more about HLC’s partners and programs, visit  http://thehealthylivingclub.org .

About the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation is building a healthier Louisiana through community outreach and charitable giving. In addition to the Challenge for a Healthier Louisiana, the Foundation has two signature programs: The Angel Award®, an annual recognition of outstanding Louisiana volunteers who improve the quality of life for at risk children, and Smart Bodies®, a school-based program to prevent childhood obesity. Blue Cross also contributes nearly $2 million annually to various nonprofit organizations throughout the state that contribute to health, education and the overall quality of life in Louisiana communities. The Foundation is funded solely through Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana.
 



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