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This past week, we had the great privilege to spend a day with Tommie Johnson: a teacher, advocate and resident of the southeast community of Grand Rapids.
This past week, our On The Ground photographer, Maria Isabel Garcia Dinkel
, had the great privilege to spend a day with Tommie Johnson: a teacher, advocate and resident of the southeast community of Grand Rapids.
Johnson begins his morning at Seeds of Promise
, where he teaches a computer class to residents of the neighborhood.
The focus of this semester's computer class is learning to navigate Microsoft Word.
After his class, Johnson teaches Daniela, a resident of the southeast neighborhood, how to work with computers.
Johnson likes to come alongside Daniela as she learns more about the ways a computer can be a helpful tool in building professional skills.
Part of Johnson's job responsibilities include making sure all the computers at Seeds of Promise are working up to par.
He takes a mid morning break at his favorite restaurant in Grand Rapids' southeast neighborhood, Hall Street Bakery.
Johnson's favorite drink to order at Hall Street Bakery is iced tea.
He ends his day by attending the City Commission meeting.
Here, he lines up with other residents to speak up at the meeting against police brutality affecting residents of color in Grand Rapids.
Johnson believes change can begin when his community stands up against injustices.
"I am here to support and to encourage other members of the community to work together and get involved to avoid these type of incidents ever happening again."
Photo essay by Dreams by Bella
On The Ground GR is made possible by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, an organization working to guarantee livability of all children.