Interview with Pneu-Path For Living

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  What does an RN, an engineer with an MBA, probation officer with a Masters in Administration of Justice, and a program coordinator with a Masters in Public Health have in common besides their post baccalaureate degrees?  A lot!  They're all natives of Detroit with hearts the size of the "motor city", and are the driving force behind My Sister Circle, a nonprofit organization serving the Metro Detroit Area.  Their mission is to provide the resources to encourage healthy relationships between women of all ages by focusing on the key areas of faith, financial responsibility, education/professionalism, health, community service and self-worth.   Founder and President, Kyra Watt, manages to keep her hands on the organization's management, program development and implementation while relying heavily on her executive leadership team: Stephanie Jacques (Program Coordinator at Chelsea Community Hospital), Patricia Watts-Davison (RN-Henry Ford Health Systems), and Kalea Sanders-Wright (Adult Probation Officer, State of Michigan Department of Corrections) for help in carrying out program initiatives. Watts conceptualized the idea of My Sister Circle after successfully helping a group of women to matriculate through an Engineering curriculum at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor). The endearing bond of the group and a little motivation from a friend was all it took for Watts to create an organization that allowed women/girls the same opportunity to build  strong and supportive bonds with one another.  Watts looked around the community where she grew up and quickly identified the need for an organization that supported a more unified womanhood.   Having witnessed too many young girls without guidance and role models along with too many older women chastising instead of uplifting, Watts soon realized the need for My Sister Circle to operate on a strict "reach forward, give back" programming approach.  Every program is designed to impact women of all ages in some way. My Sister Circle offers mentoring services for young women as well as community based educational programming and community service.  She and her leadership team all volunteer their time to My Sister Circle after working their respective professions.  Until they obtain federal 501(3)(c) status, My Sister Circle relies on private donations and personal funds to support their initiatives. They also work with other local nonprofit organizations, attend grant writing classes, network and spend a great deal of time reading to create the greatest impact.   Watts said if she had it to do over she would have started sooner, but adds she trusts God's work and considers that she may not have been ready for the many challenges of managing a nonprofit. When asked what advice she would give to others who are interested in starting a similar endeavor, Watts offered, "Once the seed is planted (the idea for something pops in your head) you have the option of watering/nourishing that seed (researching and learning about how to make that idea a reality) or doing nothing (ignoring it).  You have to live with the outcome of your decision, but remember you will always get the amount work you put in!"  My Sister Circle is involved in many community service efforts, and although the organization is just over a year old, they have accomplished a lot in a short period of time.  Their back to school drive provided school supplies to over 100 children in the Metro Detroit community. They have fed hundreds of families by working with local food banks and made Christmas a reality for 5 Metro Detroit Families, with more events to come.  When reflecting on the vision, Watts shared, "I am most grateful that God entrusted me with the responsibility of impacting the lives of the women in my community, the capability of seeing a vision for an organization, and the ability to make my dreams manifest into reality.  Every decision I make, I do so with the hope that someone else's life is touched by my actions.  I have been blessed to be exposed to a lot of things in my 26 years, and I feel it is my obligation to allow others access to those opportunities as well.  I also enjoy my blessings more when I am able to share them with others. My Sister Circle has created the opportunity for faith-based programming in our organizational model.  As a Christian woman, I strongly support understanding the balance between faith, religion, and faithfulness to God.  I also understand that everyone has a different walk.  My Sister Circle hopes to encourage women the importance of finding a balance, building a relationship with God and finding peace in living a faith-based lifestyle. "   For more information, facebook- My Sister Circle, Twitter@ MySisterCircle, IG- MySisterCircle)   Visit My sister circle at: http://www.mysistercircle.org   info@mysistercircle.org or call (313) 626-0994.