Leadership project helps youngsters deal with childhood issues
The Desert Sun, Mar. 2, 2003
By Kimberly Trone, The Desert Sun
INDIO — About 130 children from across the valley participated in a leadership training program Saturday that encouraged them to trust in the power of angels.
The annual Angel Light Academy Youth Leadership conference is scheduled to continue through today at the Fred Young Labor Center.
Indio High School student Jaime Luna, 16, said he has been involved in the program for the last five years.
“There are things that can help you and make a difference in your life,” Luna said of the principles taught by community volunteers.
Three youngsters from Valley View Elementary School in Coachella attended the program on scholarships provided by the academy.
School counselor Yaneth Chavez said students at the school need to find mechanisms to deal with tough childhood situations such as bullying.
Julia Wilmot, a founder of Angels Light, told the students they must learn to love themselves and to ask angels for guidance.
“Unconditionally, love yourself,” she said. “If you love yourself you will find love in your lifetime.”
Wilmot said her own experiences have taught her that angels are real entities.
“I am not trying to start a new religion or a cult,” she said. “I am adding to the faith most of these children already have.”
City Councilwoman Melanie Fesmire served as a facilitator at the academy.
Fesmire said she has been practicing the principles of Angel Light for about six years.