A Long-Term Foundation
Smart, focused and a competitor – that’s how Arendia Mitchell describes her niece, Arianna, of whom she’s had custody since Arianna was an infant.
Mitchell, a longtime Lonsdale resident, connected her niece with Emerald Youth Foundation when Arianna was in the first grade.
“I appreciate the adults at Emerald Youth who steer her the right way. They teach kids to stay on track and do the right thing,” said Mitchell. “Arianna is not easily influenced by negative peer pressure, and I’m really grateful for how Emerald helps keep her grounded.”
Kevin DuBose, director of Lonsdale Area Ministries for Emerald Youth, has known the family for over a decade.
“Arendia is such a committed mother to her niece. I’ve seen such growth in Arianna’s life, and it is a real joy to be in relationship with their family,” said DuBose.
A Fulton High School senior, Arianna participates in Emerald Youth’s urban church ministry, JustLead, and has received academic help through the Calling & Career Ministry.
Arianna is quick to point out the impact of the adults in her life, including her aunt and those with Emerald Youth.
“I have met so many people throughout the years at Emerald Youth, and they have helped make me into a better person and grow closer to God,” she said. “Mr. Kevin (DuBose), especially – he’s been like a father figure to me.”
Arianna also invests time at Fulton through Project GRAD and as a member of the school’s cheerleading squad. She participates in Young Life, sings on the worship team at her church, New Friendship Missionary Baptist pastored by Rev. Dr. Joseph Smith, and is a recent graduate of Youth Leadership Knoxville.
Read more about how we’re continuing to engage with young people across Knoxville in our annual report.