ST. MARY PARISH, La. (KLFY) St. Mary Parish Sheriff Blaise Smith recently attended an event to empower and educate young men to become leaders in their community and promote positive self-esteem and social skills.
The Hoodstock event “Transitioning to Manhood,” was held Saturday at the Word of Life Church in Patterson.
“Priorities define an organization, and those priorities are set by the leadership,” Smith says.
Among those priorities, according to Blaise, is communication/connection with the citizens of the parish and investment into young people.
At this year’s event, Sheriff Smith taught some local teens how to knot a tie and the photos are melting hearts.
“The morals and principles that we used to hold high seem to be diminishing in our community. Some core values that shaped the community are a part of a dying culture. The idea behind Transitioning to Manhood is to offer guidance and encouragement to young men. I don’t believe in handouts, instead, sometimes all that’s needed is a hand-up. I aim to be that hand-up,” Smith said.
Additionally, Smith says he supports the efforts of community leaders like Courtney Long ( the founder of the Hoodstock organization) in giving a “hand-up” to young people in encouraging them to become all they were created to be.