DONALDSONVILLE, La. (WAFB) - In an area where crime used to be rampant, kids are now run the show and making a big splash of their own.
Building Champions TC is a camp in Donaldsonville. The free football-themed camp for kids put on by former NFL player Mike Landry, his wife Tina and the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office.
“There was a need for something to do here with them,” Mike Landry said. “To show them that they’re valuable and show them that someone outside of their home has love for them and will spend time with them.”
A few years back, the area where the camp is held was turned into the WAG Center Substation. It’s a place where kids can play and has opened the door for people like the Landry’s to have camps like Building Champions Camp TC.
“This was one of the highest rated crime areas in Ascension Parish at one time and crime here has changed dramatically," said Mike Brooks, a lieutenant with the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office. Brooks helped run the camp and has played an integral part in the popular kid hangout.
“I’m from Donaldsonville. I’ve grown up here. I went to school here in Donaldsonville. I didn’t have camps like this,” volunteer and Donaldsonville High School track coach Robbie Madere said.
Tina Landry is from Chicago and Mike Landry is originally from Donaldsonville. They moved back to his hometown a year-and-a-half ago to take care of his ailing mother, who has since passed away. But Mike and Tina Landry aren’t leaving. They believe there’s a greater purpose for them right in Donaldsonville.
"All ships rise with the tide and we see Donaldsonville as someplace special and beautiful and we’re giving back,” Tina Landry said.
This is the first year for the camp, and the couple plans to hold more camps in the coming weeks.
To sign up for a camp or donate to the camp, visit: www.buildingchampionstc.com