2020 has created 'challenges, opportunities' for local nonprofit The Brookwood Community

Citizens work at 47 on-campus greenhouses. (Courtesy The Brookwood Community)
Citizens work at 47 on-campus greenhouses. (Courtesy The Brookwood Community)

Citizens work at 47 on-campus greenhouses. (Courtesy The Brookwood Community)

The Brookwood Community in the Katy area helps adults with mental or physical disabilities integrate into society through meaningful work. But like other organizations globally, the nonprofit has had to make adjustments this year due to the pandemic.

The nonprofit has several enterprises through which individuals on the autism spectrum or with intellectual or developmental disabilities, traumatic brain injuries or aging care can hold jobs after learning their respective skills.

There are about 230 adults either living on campus or participating in the day program at the Brookwood main campus and Brookwood’s Grand Parkway location. CEO Vivian Shudde referenced a recent speech by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts saying people with disabilities are better equipped to handle the coronavirus crisis because they have lived their lives with uncertainty and lack of control.

“The uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus is just another day of the week for them, and if we allow ourselves to lean into the gift they have to give us, it should be just another day of the week for us as well,” Shudde said.

The Brookwood Community quickly adapted to the challenges of doing things virtually, such as new retail promotions for online sales and expanded takeout services at the cafe. The horticulture department created the You’ve Been Bloomed program, which allowed individuals to purchase hanging baskets with a signed card to be delivered to homes across the Katy area.


“Although overwhelming at times, we tried to adopt a ‘What can we do?’ attitude instead of focusing on all the things we were told we could not do,” Cafe Manager Leah Andrade said. “The coronavirus created challenges and opportunities.”

The Brookwood Community

1752 FM 1489, Brookshire

281-375-2100

www.brookwoodcommunity.org
By Nola Valente
A native Texan, Nola serves as reporter for the Katy edition of Community Impact Newspaper. She studied print journalism at the University of Houston and French at the University of Paris-Sorbonne in France. Nola was previously a foreign correspondent in Jerusalem, Israel covering Middle East news through an internship with an American news outlet.


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