Twin sisters step up as leaders during St. John 4-H camps

Published 12:18 pm Wednesday, September 6, 2023

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RESERVE – Twin sisters Kori and Kaci Williams stepped up as true leaders over the summer, putting smiles on more than 500 children’s faces during the 4-H Summer Camp and the Louisiana Outdoor Science & Technology Camp.

The girls invested nearly 100 hours into serving as camp counselors over the summer. Juggling different age groups with different mindsets, the twins searched for creative ways to make summer camp enjoyable.

“As counselors, our job was to make the kids have fun and feel included,” Kori Williams said. “A lot of the kids felt homesick, so we wanted to put smiles upon their faces and let them enjoy things that they wouldn’t be able to do at home.”

Kaci and Kori have been members of St. John Parish 4-H since they were fourth graders at West St. John Elementary. Now juniors in the St. John Parish STEM Magnet Program, they remain active within the club, with Kori serving as president and Kaci serving as treasurer.

This past summer marked their first year as counselors, and they look forward to returning next summer.

Kaci used her artistic talents to guide campers through spray paint and tie dye crafts, while Kori covered food and fitness. Campers cooked oatmeal and made their own ice cream to cool off amid the triple-digit temperatures.

At the end of the week, Kaci and Kori surprised the campers with a glow in the dark party, complete with glow stick decorations.

The “Get Ready With 4-H” Summer camp drew participation from approximately 375 fourth through sixth graders from across Louisiana. The second camp, L.O.S.T., used the great outdoors as a means to introduce 180 seventh and eighth graders to STEM topics.

“We were dealing with your typical teens,” Kori said. “When we did ATV safety, they thought it was boring at first because we were driving safely with an ATV. We tried to take the things they found boring and make some kind of impact out of it byshowing you can get an ATV certification to compete in 4-H University and actually get a scholarship off of it. You can make a future out of this and help save lives.”

Many of the children had trouble telling Kori and Kaci apart, and it’s not hard to understand why. Beyond their friendly and humorous demeanors, the twins have nearly identical interests.

Both girls are members of their school’s basketball, softball, and track and field teams. They are both honor roll students who graduated in West St. John Elementary’s Top 10 during the COVID year, and they have both been recognized by the West St. John Civic Association numerous times. In band, both are trained in marching tenor, while Kori also plays the saxophone, and Kaci plays the clarinet.

Kaci and Kori’s shared passion for working with children is reflected in their chosen career paths. After high school, Kaci plans to major in 3D Animation with a goal of working for Disney. Kori plans to major in pre-med biology to become a neonatologist.

In 4-H, the twins have participated in pumpkin decorating, candy grams, trunk or treat events, stomp team, and  talent competitions. They recently created a step team called the “STEM Steppers” in hopes of bringing a routine to this year’s 4-H Achievement Day.

“With Step team, we are trying to teach kids how to communicate. When we started Step team, we were shy. We wanted them to embrace their inner confidence. I want kids to really step outside of their comfort zones,” Kori said. “You shouldn’t be ahamed to show your talent. The whole point is to make yourself better. You shouldn’t just sit back and wait for something to happen. You should be the one to do it and try to make the world a better place for yourself and others to live in.”