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New initiative, Uprise Indy, employs Brookside residents

Posted at 11:02 PM, Jul 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-28 00:45:10-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Leaders at Brookside Community Development Corporation on the near east side of Indianapolis are expanding their efforts to help the most vulnerable in their community.

A new initiative called Uprise Indy is part of a goal to help transform the Brookside neighborhood and be known for something other than violence, addiction, and poverty.

Uprise Indy includes three employment opportunities for those that the Brookside CDC already has relationships with through its outreach efforts.

"One specifically for youth to do lawn care. Breakfast burritos, which is Brookside Burrito company, but then also we have construction company that is working on demolition right now with eight employees that are demoing houses all over the city with contractors that believe in the work we're doing at Brookside," Brookside CDC CEO David Cederquist said.

"I came to Brookside four years ago suffering in chronic addiction, really suffering," Jermaine Woolery said.

Woolery is one of more than 20 people working for Brookside Community Development Corporation, which launched in 2015 as the outreach arm of Brookside Community Church. He's now an employee at Brookside Burrito company.

"Good job Brookside, having an opportunity for folks needing a second chance, good job we need that," Woolery said.

Uprise Indy provides an opportunity for employees to get into a rhythm and learn essential soft skills they need to work.

"A generationally poor community does not necessarily know, they don't know these things. Cederquist explained. "They are trying to survive in life and to allow them an opportunity to find a place to work and onboard into work is what we have seen as a gap in our community."

Brookside CDC's other initiatives include reentry, play and housing. Woolery is also in Brookside's Isaiah House residential program, targeted at those who were formerly incarerated, dealing with addiction or homelessness.

He said leaders at Brookside have helped him see the errors of his ways and find peace in his life.

"I thank them for giving me room to struggle, to realize that there is an out and to choose the out," Woolery said.

Cederquist said the community's support is key in their mission to continue the Uprise Indy initiative. Brookside Burrito Co. offers curbside and delivery. You can also help the lawn care company. Quotes are available on their website, Brookside Lawn Care Company.

Watch the video in the player above to learn more.