Seeking participants for her upcoming Reupholstering With a Purpose Summer Apprentice Program, Jamika Smith is looking forward to helping young women reach their full potential. Paying tribute to her late grandmother, Alberteen "Teena" Stredrick, the Cartersville resident established the nonprofit Teena’s Legacy in 2014.
“I was a stay-at-home mom,” Smith said. “I felt I had another purpose outside of the field I [was] working in, which was community and partnership building/organizing in Chicago, Illinois. This will be my fifth year running my Summer Apprentice Program. This program is [a] great opportunity for young women to explore their authentic self, using the trade of upholstery as a tool for self-expression and transformation.”
Tailored to young women ages 16 to 21, the complimentary program will be presented at 320 N. Tennessee St. in Cartersville.
“Reupholstering With a Purpose Summer Apprentice Program is a 10-week summer program [where] each participant [goes] through 60 hours of hands-on upholstery instruction, fabric layout, cutting and demos; how to estimate and choose fabric yardage; and everything else that goes into reupholstering and reviving furniture. If we raise enough money, they will travel with me to Chicago for two weeks for training from [a] master upholster with over 30 years of experience. While there, they will have hands-on experience, giving them the opportunity to generate some income.
“Upon returning to Cartersville, they will take what they've learned and reupholster five [to] six pieces; [at] the end of the program, we will have a yard sale. … [The] summer program provides an opportunity for exposure, travel and to pick up a trade that will last for a lifetime.”
During her first year in Cartersville, Smith received a boost from the Cartersville-Bartow Community Foundation. During the foundation’s 2017 fall grant cycle, Teena’s Legacy was awarded $2,000.
“I moved to Cartersville in August 2017,” she said. “I obtained the space in October 2017 and applied for the grant to help with my winter/spring program. I pretty much applied and forgot I applied because so many things [were] hitting me at one time. Before I … noticed I received the grant, I was feeling a little discouraged. I prayed to God, ‘I got this space but no real funding to operate out of.’ Then a couple of days later, Jean from the foundation sent me [an] email saying, I'm receiving a $2,000 grant.
“… You could imagine how excited I was [feeling], because for me $2,000 can go a long way. With the money, I ran my winter/spring program. I worked with four women from Highland Rivers, and I worked with six beautiful young spirits from the Flowering Branch [Children’s] Shelter.”
An affiliate of the Community Foundation of Northwest Georgia, Cartersville-Bartow Community Foundation awarded $20,550 in grants to 15 nonprofits during its fall grant cycle.
Along with Teena’s Legacy, the other recipients included Bartow Education Foundation, Bartow Literacy Council, Beyond Limits Therapeutic Riding, Boys & Girls Clubs of Bartow County, CrossPoint City Church, Etowah Scholarship Foundation, Etowah Valley Humane Society, Hands of Christ After School Program grades six to 12, Hickory Log Vocational School, Margaret and Luke Pettit Environmental Preserve, Paxen, Rotary Club of Etowah, SKORE and The Bookmobile “Reading to Go Places.”
“Our grants have helped fund projects to help promote literacy, shelter individuals who are homeless or living with developmental disabilities, provide tutoring for at-risk students and so much more,” stated Trey Jordan, chairman of the Cartersville-Bartow Community Foundation, in a news release. “These projects not only help individuals and families become more successful, but they serve the greater good and contribute to the quality of life of everyone who lives or works here in Bartow County.”
For more information about Teena’s Legacy, providing support for the nonprofit and dates for the summer offering call 773-678-3638, email Teenaslegacy@gmail.com or visit https://teenaslegacy.com.
The deadline to sign up for the Reupholstering With a Purpose Summer Apprentice Program is May 22.