Herndon's Safe Haven held a back-to-school party in conjunction with local Girl Scout Troop 1886 working toward their gold award service project Saturday, Sept. 10 at the Parkridge Gardens Apartments.
Safe Haven is run through a grant by the Eisenhower Foundation to Vecinos Unidos/Neighbors United and was started in April of this year to offer a safe place for elementary and middle school aged children to go after school.
The group held the barbecue to help students get excited for heading back to school as well as bring parents and children together in the community. The girl scouts responsible for the event include Lindsay Ward and Katie Dean. Ward and Dean planned the event and collected school supplies and certificates from Staples prior to the picnic to hand out as prizes for the children in attendance.
Leah Lotochi and Elissa Marshall were responsible for dance classes during the event while Melissa Duvall and Nikki Graff offered help with cooking and cooking classes.
During the three-hour event, children in the Safe Haven program as well as children in the Herndon community were able to play games like soccer and math Bingo. They were able to interact not only with each other but also members of Herndon's Police department. Bubbles, hot dogs, Sno-cones and a science experiment table where children could make slime were just a few highlights of the picnic's success. An inflatable moon bounce playground, a spin art machine, pencil box painting and other arts and crafts were also available for students. The event included a backpack raffle and each child in attendance was sent home with a school calendar, study tips and a goody bag full of new school supplies.