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Serve like Christ: Christian mom of young Detroit activist receives ‘Public Health Heroes’ award

Photographed: Detroit Public Health Heroes Award recipient Rhonda Smith and Councilperson Gabe Leland at Detroit District 7 Healthy Living Initiative Kick-Off April 4, 2017 (Photo Credit: Rhonda Smith Facebook)Article By Rebecca Johnson // EEW Magazine News

Share In 2012, a Detroit boy was widely praised for his efforts to raise money for his cash-strapped city with a lemonade stand. As the saying goes, the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree.

Rhonda Smith, the Christian mom of the popular young community activist, Joshua Smith, recently received an award of her own for her good work in the Motor City.

Smith was honored as one of the Public Health Heroes of Michigan for helping residents within the city of Detroit and Southeast Michigan get healthier, and for her work with a local park known as Zussman Playground.

The CEO of Soul Delights, LLC, a Michigan-based company dedicated to offering products, programs and services to nourish the body and soul naturally, told EEW Magazine she was first given the opportunity to be community ambassador for Zussman Playground two years ago.

Rhonda Smith (R) poses with unidentified award recipient (L) [Photo Credit: Rhonda Smith Facebook)“The official contacted me after hearing that my son Joshua, at 9, had a lemonade and popcorn stand to raise money for the City of Detroit,” said Smith in an email sent to Empowering Everyday Women.

“She said she figured that the parents would have initiative if their son took such initiative. She told me the community job was mine if I wanted it. I took the job, seeing this as an extension of the healing work God has called me to do,” continued the former EEW parenting columnist.

The honor was bestowed upon Smith and other remarkable community servants by District 7 Councilman Gabe Leland as part of his Healthy Living Initiative event to kick off National Public Health Week. It was done in partnership with the American Public Health Association Black Caucus of Health Workers.

Rhonda Smith (M) and other community residents at Zussman Playground (Photo Credit: Zussman Playground Facebook)Smith, whose health and healing business targets clients with advanced degrees and six-figure incomes, has not forgotten to reach back into the community and bless the underserved.

“My heart has always been for those in urban areas who need healing, body, soul and spirit,” she explained. “Because this population is unlikely to come to me, I would go to them as a community ambassador.”

Though the compassionate leader did not take on the task to receive recognition, her selfless work to empower and improve the lives of others did not go unnoticed.

In her role, Smith has organized and hosted a variety of programs in the park, including outdoor games competitions; arts and crafts; and Zumba; had healthy drinks and snacks demonstrations and tastings; and commissioned an artist to complete a mural on a wall adjacent to the park.

For more information about Soul Delights, her natural health and healing business, visit her website.


ALSO READ: CeCe Winans 'honored' to help nonprofit organization 'Dress for Success'

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