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Giving Back: LaPlace 14-year-old always gives for others

LAPLACE — Arianah Newsome’s life is ever changing as her family travels around the country for her father’s career, but her servant’s heart is the one constant that always carries over.

Arianah, 14, relocated to LaPlace in January and has spent the year building family ties at Celebration Church on U.S. 51.

Arianah Newsome helped serve food and relief to victims of Hurricane Harvey in 2017.

Through her Girl Power Life Group, Arianah crafted a sleeping mat and packed bagged lunches recently served to the homeless population of New Orleans.

She, her parents and siblings represented the Celebration Church LaPlace campus on a mission trip to Costa Rica this summer, where she spent a week caring for young children at an orphanage.

When an unexpected storm brought flooding and busted pipes, Arianah strapped on a backpack and walked along the slippery, steep mountain road to deliver bottled water to people working on their homes.

“I love helping and making things for people to see their expressions when they are happy and excited,” Arianah said. “Costa Rica inspired me because it really got me out of my comfort zone. I usually like to do things behind the scenes.”

Quiet and humble, Arianah shies away from recognition, but her mother Ninfa Newsome said she makes her presence known through good deeds.

Ninfa Newsome

“Wherever you go, you will always see Ari, not because she’s loud or boisterous, but because she always does something for someone without needing to be asked,” Ninfa said.

“She never wants me to share what she’s done because she’ll turn all red. She doesn’t do things for attention. I’m most proud of her heart.”

Arianah Newsome displays a sleeping mat she made for the homeless community during a recent outreach effort.

According to Ninfa, Arianah is the one who reaches for a tissue when someone sneezes and wipes a baby’s face when it’s messy.

When the storm caused toilets to back up during the mission trip to Costa Rica, Ninfa said she and other adults made excuses not to clean them, while Arianah picked up supplies without complaint.

“I think she taught me something that day,” Ninfa said.

Arianah’s other outreach includes serving food to victims of Hurricane Harvey, helping operate a food pantry, watching children during church and volunteering at youth group events with her older sister.

Arianah displays a design from her Cricut machine.

“Since we don’t have immediate family close to us, the church is my family,” Arianah said.

She enjoys being homeschooled because it gives her the freedom to experience lessons through visits to historic sites and museums.

When someone is in need, such as when family or friends states away need help moving boxes, homeschooling gives her the flexibility to travel.

When she’s not volunteering, Arianah plays the piano and prints designs from her Cricut machine.

“Ari is a crafter and a visionary,” Ninfa said. “If I’m throwing away a bottle cap, she wants to keep it and use it for a project.”

Every holiday, Arianah covers the house in homemade decorations. In the future, she wants to pursue a career in graphic design and dive head first into more mission trips.