2021 Network Awards: Outstanding Children’s Program and Children’s Facilitator — Circles Washtenaw County, MI

Congratulations to Circles Washtenaw County in Ypsilanti, Michigan, for modeling a dynamic children’s program regardless of the obstacles quarantine put in their way.

From their program lead, Kaite Scott, “The Circles Washtenaw County Children’s Program is fortunate to have a group full of committed and engaged youth who show up, ready to engage with us! Our New & Good’s could go on forever with them. The relationships that our volunteers and teachers build with our children is really special. Even after being apart physically for months, we still have youth and volunteers committed to growing and learning with each other and checking in with one another week after week. Our youth are creative, thoughtful, unique citizens of our community and make our Circles program deeply enriched! I’m grateful to work with them daily and look forward to the many ways in which they continue to bring joy to our world.”

Circles USA also celebrates their children’s program facilitator: Najma Treadwell.

Najma teaches the elementary age class and always goes above and beyond expectations. She engages her kids with interactive lessons that apply the Circles themes to real life situations. During the theme of volunteerism, her class chose to help put away tables and chairs and clean up after the communal dinner. Then, she had her class discuss why it was important to serve their Circles community as well as the wider world.

During COVID, Najma has been creative as she engages with her class in a virtual setting. Together with her children at home, Najma has offered science demonstrations as well as utilized her oldest son, Jaheem’s, knowledge to help teach the younger children. Her class has shared their projects with the rest of the program, such as their vision boards and their homemade savings jars, inspiring all the youth to participate.

Najma’s dedication to Circles extends far beyond her class as well. She has facilitated classes for the Circles parents on setting up successful schedules for their children throughout the week as well as behavior management and strategies for difficult moments. Recently, Najma has also become a board member of their lead organization: Friends In Deed, taking her commitment to a whole new level.

Congratulations to Circles of Washtenaw County and Najma Treadwell.