Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Celebrate Summer Is More Than Fun and Games.(West Side Journal)

Byline: Patrick Dunn For the Journal

* Event's proceeds will go toward a ministry being built to help juvenile offenders

Thousands of teenagers are arrested in New Mexico every year and many are involved in violent gang activity, a host of criminal acts and substance abuse. Can a dunk booth be part of the solution?

Music, food, games and even a dunk booth will be part of Celebrate Summer 2003. The event is designed to be a day of family fun; proceeds will benefit Project HOPE (Helping Others Pursue Excellence), a ministry being constructed to reach and reform juvenile offenders.

The goal of the full-time Rio Rancho police officer and ministry president, Dale Lumley, is to create a school where the youths would live for a year, a three-month boot camp and a mentoring system that will make permanent positive changes in offenders.

"These kids need more than just punishment," Lumley said. "They need discipline, and discipline includes encouragement, correction and teaching."

Getting the word out

As a ministry, those in the program will hear a healthy dose of the Gospel. …

Log in to your account to read this article – and millions more.