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5 Questions with ... Brenda Major of Homework Hangout

5 Questions with ... Brenda Major of Homework Hangout

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Name: Brenda Major

Age: 59

Occupation: Academics manager for Homework Hangout Inc. 

City of residency: Decatur

What's new at Homework Hangout?

Homework Hangout has really been growing recently. We're not just a community center, but now we're also a training facility. We offer programs ranging from our traditional after-school program, to apprenticeship programs for people who are interested in learning and preparing for the construction trades. We want to provide services for every member of the community as well as we can. 

Homework Hangout recently had its annual community Christmas party. Is it important for the organization to host fun events like this throughout the year?

There's an old quote that goes, "People won't care how much you know until they know how much you care." This time of year is known for spreading Christmas joy and Christmas spirit, and you can see it on TV and in the lights around town. But some of these students don't see it around their own houses. They may not have a meal, gifts or a tree, and we serve many of those students in our after-school program. It's really important for use to say that not only are we in the community, but we're here to actually serve the community. 

Looking forward to the new year, are there some goals Homework Hangout wants to accomplish?

We want to continue to provide more services to the community, specifically regarding financial literacy and financial health within the community. We know that many families within the African-American community can be squeamish about money, how to handle it and how to make it work, so we want to help people understand financial literacy. We also want to make sure our teens are ready to look into their goals after high school, whether it's higher education or meaningful employment. I'm also the director of nutrition here, so I want to help introduce fresh fruits and vegetables into our meal plans. 

Christmas is tomorrow. Do you and your family have a special way to celebrate?

My family loves to celebrate by playing games, and we also love to sing. We think we sing well, so there's a lot of singing of Christmas carols. We also get together and do a Christmas feast. We each have different specialties, so there's a lot of good sights and smells, and a lot of good eating. 

What's your favorite thing about Christmas?

Christmas is my favorite time of year, because everyone who was really grinchy really does have a heart-growing experience. Even though there's a lot of hustle and bustle, people open their hearts a lot more. It really is a magical time of year. When people reflect on how much they've survived from January to December, you tend to have a grateful heart around Christmas. 

jcook@herald-review.com | (217) 421-7980

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