Members of the Livingston Volunteers for Family and Community Council gathered March 30 at Carter Plantation in Springfield to celebrate their contributions to Livingston Parish.

The group, made up of 71 women and one man, also honored members at its annual appreciation luncheon, a news release said.

These 72 Livingston Parish residents are part of four LVFC clubs in the parish: Albany Club, Can Do’s Club, Ladybugs Club and Port Vincent Club.

They meet monthly and hold educational service projects in Livingston Parish, the release said.

Gloria Flick, LVFC Council vice president and mistress of ceremonies, welcomed the members and guests to the “All Things Louisiana” luncheon.

Each table was decorated with items from Louisiana including Elmer’s chocolate, Barq’s root beer, cypress knees, Jiffy cornbread, Manda sausage, Zapp’s Potato Chips and king cakes.

The annual event began with the invocation by Madeline Maehren, president of the Ladybugs Club and Flick, introduced the speakers and guests.

Gayle Miller, 2014 LVFC president, and Layne Langley, LSU AgCenter area nutrition agent, presented the awards.

Receiving the New Member Award were Madeline Maehren, Learah Moss, Etta Parker, Renee’ Deaton, Dorothy “Dot” Kanada, Becky Cambre, Patricia Sziber and Patti Darby.

The 2014 Perfect Attendance Award was presented to Sharon Teixeira, Carolyn Carpenter, Nelda Graham, Linda Cunningham, Mary Thornhill, Gene Ducote, Phyllis Mack, Jane Vizinat, Carolyn Giacone, Lillie Glascock, Mary Ann Kinchen, Flick, Bob Becnel and Helen Saxon.

Recognized for their years of service were Mary Thornhill, 5 years; Sharon Teixeira, 10 years; Dianne Cambre, 20 years; Jonnie Dorris, 25 years; and Carolyn Brady, 45 years.

Each club president presented a report including a brief overview of projects and services.

Mary Thornhill, Albany Club president, said her the club donated 139 teddy bears to the Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office and collected clothing and goods for homeless veterans. More than $1,700 in items were donated, she said. Albany members held a baby shower and donated the items to Hammond Restoration House, donated 107 Raise a Reader bags to the Livingston Health Unit and adopted three families at Christmas.

On behalf of the 2014 Can Do’s President Terri Latimer, current Can Do’s President Carolyn Carter said her group donated bingo prizes to the Denham Springs Council On Aging and assembled and donated 179 book bags to the Walker Head Start Center. The club also collected money for St. Vincent de Paul’s prescription campaign. The group’s annual quilt raffle affords them funds for projects and donations to charitable organizations. The club celebrated its 20th year participating in the annual Ornament Swap.

Ladybug 2014 President Donna Bencaz talked about her club’s contributions to the parish. She told the group that in addition to hosting the appreciation luncheon, members volunteered at school functions, served as vacation Bible school craft leaders and worked with a widow’s group. The members constructed prayer shawls and prayer blankets for the sick in the parish. A service the Ladybugs enjoy doing annually is collecting and donating toys to Livingston Parish Sheriff Jason Ard’s Christmas Crusade, she said.

Jinx Berthelot, Port Vincent 2014 president, shared with the group that her club donated coats, sweaters, hats and gloves to Coats for Caring Project for the homeless in Baton Rouge. The Port Vincent Club constructed more than 70 pillow cases for the Creating Pillowcase Dreams Project benefitting pediatric units at area hospitals and assembled and donated 117 Raise a Reader bags to the Livingston Health Unit. The club also collected 452 coupons worth $8,800 for military families and box tops for parish schools. Their annual Christmas basket raffle raised more $580 for Cancer Services of Baton Rouge.

Linda Furr, with Blue Star Mothers of Louisiana, thanked the clubs for donating to her group.

Blair Edwards, 21st Judicial District Juvenile Court judge, talked about her role and responsibilities as a juvenile court judge.

Kenny Sharpe, Livingston county agent, expressed gratitude for the efforts and contributions of LVFC to Livingston. He said the clubs’ 30,007 volunteer hours equated to almost $300,000 in services.

Nancy Buratt, Port Vincent Club member, and Barbara Koles, from the Ladybugs, led a memorial program to honor members who died last year.

Patricia Arledge, LSU AgCenter administration coordinator, was honored for the support she has provided the club.

For information on the Livingston Volunteers for Family and Community, call the Livingston Extension office at (225) 686-3020 or Layne Langley at