PROJECT RECLAIM: Where stars are born and filmed

Before the unveiling of Project Reclaim’s new broadcast production components, the crowd viewed part of a podcast already created by the youth.

By Marilyn Miller

A large crowd of people representing Minden’s business, judicial, chamber, educational, and philanthropic communities gathered Wednesday evening to witness the unveiling of Project Reclaim’s newest program – television production.

Project Reclaim is a leadership academy that targets elementary through high school youth throughout Minden and Webster Parish.

“The main goal of Project Reclaim is to help our participants become the best leaders that they can be by learning about leadership, performing well academically, and learning to respect relationships with others,” said Executive Director Ron Anderson. “Through leadership training, life and social skills development activities, and media training through hands-on experience with TV production, post-production editing, as well as parental involvement activities we empower youth to reach for the stars!”

Lloyd Davis, who has been assisting Project Reclaim youth with TV production, recently made it possible for the non-profit organization to purchase all of his broadcast components, thus enabling PR to broadcast over UTube and other media platforms.

“The youth are learning interviewing, working in front of the cameras and behind, setting up scenes, writing scripts…all of the jobs that are required in the broadcast profession,” Anderson said. “This builds up their self-esteem, and translates to the real world of work.”

Prior to unveiling the television set, complete with multiple cameras, the crowd was shown a podcast featuring testimonials from students and parents of Project Reclaim. Now the youth will be able to produce their own podcasts and broadcast them over different platforms.

“Prayer works, but Project Reclaim works, too,” one parent said in an interview.

Following the unveiling, young people and their parents were invited to enact interviewing scenes, while other students manned the cameras and directed.

Project Reclaim primarily serves youth that are considered “at risk” due to poverty, residency in high crime neighborhoods, single parent household composition, performing below their academic potential, behavioral difficulties in the academic setting, and youth in need of additional support.

“This (working with non-profits and youth) is difficult work,” Anderson said, “But there is always brightness in it if you just look.”

Wrapping up, Anderson challenged the crowd to “Be ready! You are going to be interviewed. Be sure to answer when I call!”

Lloyd Davis (far left) calls for volunteers to work the cameras, be interviewed, and direct a podcast on Project Reclaims new set.