Telegram - Serving Metropolitan Detroit Since 1944

By Renee Summers
Telegram Reporter 

Community Circle SE Founder Brings Help and Hope to Those In Need

 

Wayne Memorial High School Senior Brooke Johnson founded Community Circle SE in 2019 to give back to those in need.

his June, Brooke Johnson will be graduating from Wayne Memorial High School and will then head to Eastern Michigan University this fall with the goal of becoming a special education teacher. Education is Johnson's passion, as evidenced by the support she has shown both teachers and students in the Wayne-Westland Community Schools District. After attending a Civitan Youth Leadership and Diversity Conference, a youth leadership seminar, in Indiana in 2019, Johnson was inspired to be a catalyst for change in her community. Determined to do something to do something impactful, she decided the schools were a good place to start. She knew families in the district routinely experienced difficulty acquiring necessary schools supplies and she also knew that teachers experienced difficulty in helping due to budget restraints. She initiated her first School Supplies Drive Campaign to provide those school supplies to students in the lower and upper elementary schools in the district. It was a success and Johnson was able to provide more than 200 school supplies packages to teachers to hand out as they saw the need. With that success, she established Community Circle SE to provide a resource to meet needs in her community.

A Literacy Campaign came next, supplying teachers with donated books to use in their classrooms. When COVID-19 hit, Johnson began a collection drive for front line workers, collecting snacks and drinks to put into care packages. Those care packages went to hospital workers and fire departments. A second annual school supplies campaign was completed earlier this school year, something Johnson wants to make a yearly tradition. "I think it's helped students realize that people do care and are willing to help them get their supplies for school, and not to worry about that because school is important," she says. In early May of this year, a local shelter for families also was the recipient of much-needed supplies including personal care products, baby items, linens, and paper towels.

Community Circle SE is still in its early stages, but appears to have found a mission: pulling community together to give where it's needed. Donations are what makes Community Circle's work possible. Johnson invites the community to see what her organization has done and how they can help. "Spreading the word by sharing our website, our Facebook page, our Go Fund Me page, and Amazon Wish List," she says is the best way to help.

In 2020, Brooke Johnson asked for donations and gave care packages to front line workers in hospitals and fire departments.

Johnson says with 501(c)3 non-profit status, the organization could do much more, yet obtaining non-profit status is a process that can cost several hundreds of dollars. It is a goal Johnson has for the future and she adds, "We're going to need funding for that so that's one of our next steps."

Johnson has received recognition for her work in the community. She is recipient of the Michigan Associations of Student Councils and Honor Societies (MASC/MAHS) Unsung Hero Award and the Prudential Spirit of Community Award. Awards and accolades aside, Johnson smiles and says, "I just love seeing the happiness that comes across when I donate the things." To find out more, go to http://www.communitycirclese.org or http://www.facebook.com/wwcommunitycircle.

 

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