09/23/07 — Minority teachers honored at Imani celebration

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Minority teachers honored at Imani celebration

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on September 23, 2007 2:02 AM

Goldsboro High School's first minority teachers took a place of honor on the Wall of Firsts Friday during the fourth annual Imani Celebration at the Greenleaf Vision of Faith Community Center on William Street.

Officials of the Rebuilding Broken Places Community Development Corp. held the celebration in its center and invited all 25 black teachers who taught at Goldsboro High and at Dillard during the 1969-70 school year. Fifteen attended.

One of them, Hattie H. Hughes, taught science to the center's chief executive officer, John Barnes. He graduated in 1972 and said she was his homeroom teacher his freshman year.

"They were all very appreciative of the honor," he said the day following the Imani celebration, which more than 200 people attended.

Imani means faith and is one of the seven principles of Kwanzaa, a tradition established to provide a means for black people to reaffirm their commitment to their community.

Barnes said Rebuilding Broken Places has been successful over the years administering programs that benefit low- to moderate-income people in the community, including senior citizens at Grace Village and first-time homeowners at Faith Estates.

"Somebody who always thought they would always be a renter suddenly becomes a homeowner -- with equity," said the center's board chairman, the Rev. William Barber, who is also pastor of Greenleaf Christian Church. "Our programs build not only the community but their spirit and their family."

Barber said the center has brought in or inspired almost $7 million in development, and Greenleaf Christian Church has contributed more than $1.5 million.

Faith Estates has six families living in it and another house under construction. The homes have three bedrooms and two baths and are about 1,200 square feet.

Rebuilding Broken Places has also partnered with the city of Goldsboro and Project Homestead to provide homes for 30 families at Harris Estates.

The center has a Christian Academy, a preschool and an after school program and is home to education workshops for adults on topics like handling money and staying healthy.