Circle Up Indy is a non-profit community-based business/organization serving Indianapolis, Indiana, and the surrounding counties. Circle Up Indy was established in 2014. Its founder, James C. Wilson, is a native of the Martindale-Brightwood, a notorious area on the east side of Indianapolis. Circle Up Indy is a business and community organization that focuses on economics, education, employment, mentorship, and health services for youth and families in the community. In the past, we served as a concierge of resources to the community with hopes of inspiring less violence and developing a stronger community.
In August 2014, Circle Up Indy hosted its first annual Peace Festival at James Russell Lowell IPS School 51. This inaugural event was a huge success, bringing over 1000 people from the community to support and learn about local businesses, youth and adult programs, educational services, and employment opportunities. Thanks to our key partners, sponsors, and supporters such as Community Hospital East, Fox 59 News, IPS, Indygo, Ivy Tech Community College, and the many other supporters for such a great event.
Circle Up Indy's focus is to continue to in inspire the community by further developing our Youth Employment Initiative which will assist with the development of a vigorous work ethic for our youth; experience, employment, professional development, and additional life skills. In addition to our Youth Employment Initiative Circle Up Indy is launching its Juvenile Nursing Program. The focus of the program is to promote healthy ways of life and to care for those who are chronically ill or disabled by a physical and/or mental challenge. Our partnership with the Edna Martin Christian Center allows us to promote vocational classes, GED/HSE courses, and the Culinary Arts program. Edna Martin Christian Center has been a huge supporter of Circle Up Indy and all of the organization's accomplishments.
Recently, Circle Up Indy and Bloom Project Inc. (Partnering Youth Mentoring Program) hosted a Youth Summit at Edna Martin Christian Center called "#Are You Mad or Nah?" With the cooperation of both organizations, Circle Up Indy and Bloom Project Inc. were able to bring law enforcement--including patrol officers, judges--to meet with youth from throughout the city. The goal of the event was to educate and understand the strife so many young black males face with law enforcement and the criminal justice system. The event was structured as a panel with a mixture of law enforcement and African American young men. Parents attended with their children and it was explosive how the youth engaged with law enforcement to express themselves as minorities in the community. The youth summit was featured on Fox 59, Channel 8, Channel 13, and the Late Amos Brown show. It was enlightening to all who attended, and it established some partnerships to assist with the misconception of our African American youth and urban community culture.
Our goal for the future is to be a strong force in the community by providing direct employment, and services for youth and young adults in the community year-round. It is our passion to tackle the economic disparities so many families face daily. By directly working for Circle Up Indy or our partnering businesses, and organizations youth in the communities will gain valuable soft skills that is a need for success in life. The organization is working towards scholarship opportunities for those who are inspired to seek higher education. No one organization can do it alone. We are looking to expand our partnerships and services to become an impactful force to the community.