Jayla’s School Closets
Jayla Wideman is Committed to Giving Back
Article Renee J. Turner
Jayla was 14 when she started her nonprofit organization, FHL Closets and Tutoring Services, Inc. (FHL), in 2019. Faith, Hope and Love, the organization’s mantra, brings awareness to students in need. CEO Jayla is bringing FHL supply closets to elementary and middle schools.
Jayla started out by giving schools free school supplies and toiletries when the schools began requesting additional items. She soon grasped the magnitude of the lack of food accessibility for school children.
“When I first started my organization, I underestimated the sheer number of students who would need non-perishable food items in order to succeed in school,” she says.
Jayla added food pantry items, school uniforms, and clothing to her school closets. “I think that if children are self-conscious about not having these necessities, it’s harder for them to concentrate on their studies. We hope that by providing these items, it makes school a better environment for them,” Jayla says.
Envisioning schools across the country, FHL has closets in five schools in Georgia, Las Vegas and Washington, D.C., and hopes to cover five states by the end of the year. Jayla also has plans for a free online tutoring program during the summer.
At 15, focusing on her education, taking honors classes, and receiving a 98 average in school, she hopes to one day attend Yale University after high school.
Joining many of our dedicated youth, Jayla has been attending Black Lives Matter peaceful protest rallies. “I want to be involved in organizations that continue to work on solutions to fix issues that plague our society—such as homelessness, police brutality, and racism.”
Jayla is a 2020 winner of the national Riley’s Way Foundation’s Call for Kindness annual competition, where she received a grant awarded to students across the country who inspire kindness and work to strengthen their communities. RileysWay.org/Call-For-Kindness/
To learn more about Jayla’s Closets, visit FHLClosets.org.