Recently my wife Shanique Johnson and I had the pleasure of spreading some Easter cheer during the Easter Basket Giveaway at the Carver Ranches Day Care Center. Following a discussion about the true meaning of Easter, we handed out baskets to 30 children. The baskets were filled with toys, candy and edu-taining (educational and entertaining) gifts.
We also joined the children in educational songs and dancing. “It’s just our way of appreciating our most precious neighbors – the children in our community” states Mrs. Shanique Johnson. The Easter Basket Giveaway was made possible by the support of family members, friends and neighbors who donated items for each basket. Many thanks to Mrs. Ruthie McDonald, Brittany McDonald, and the staff at the Carver Ranches Day Care Center for their assistance and participation. Serving our babies is one of the most rewarding contributions any of us can make to the future of our community…no fancy titles necessary.
Celebrating 300 Men in Black
For the past two years, the Greater Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church has presented its 300 Men in Black program towards its mission to revitalize the African American community through building its men (in mind, body and spirit). This year’s program took place on March 29, 2014 and was attended by well over 300 men, most wearing black, along with many women and children who came to support the cause. The program featured addresses by Reverend Joseph C. Johnson (senior pastor of Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church), and also included greetings delivered by Bishop Victor Curry, a Carver Ranches (West Park) native and senior pastor of New Birth Baptist Church, Dwayne Flournoy, Chief of Police for the City of Hallandale Beach, and myself.
A stirring sermon was delivered by Anthony Saunders, ordained minister and City Commissioner for Hallandale Beach. West Park resident, Dr. Corey Montgomery, unveiled a new initiative the church will implement to include mentoring and other character development opportunities for young boys and girls. In addition to its focus on strengthening families by strengthening men, the event highlighted 37 years of service rendered by Reverend Joe C. Johnson as Senior Pastor of Ebenezer. Mr. Larry Stafford, the men’s ministry chairman of Greater Ebenezer exclaimed that “it gets better every year and this year greatly exceeded our expectations”.
Stay Informed! Stay Involved! There has been a significant amount of momentum built around the feedback residents provided for our consideration as city leadership. As you saw in the last community paper, the City Manager has started responding to the feedback and provided responses to many of the topics of concern presented. Additional work is being done by city staff, Broward Sheriff’s Office, and others in West Park’s community leadership to ensure that all recommendations and concerns are sufficiently addressed.
At the April 16, 2014 City Commission meeting, Mayor Jones announced that he will provide at least a quarterly update on resident feedback in this newspaper. We will continue to support the work of the mayor and city manager as they lead us through this process.
Please read this newspaper monthly, come to our City Commission meetings (on the first and third Wednesdays monthly), attend your Homeowner Association meetings, and contact us as necessary to keep us abreast of how we are doing. Also, if you would like to view the full list of recommendations and progress made to date, please visit my website at www.westparkisonecommunity.com. Your input has provided us with great direction and momentum. Whatever you do, please stay informed and stay involved!
You can also submit any additional recommendations/ concerns or other feedback online or by calling City Hall at (954) 989-2688.