By Clyde Hughes | AC JosepH Media
BRIDGETON – Carole Seabrook Green’s name is nearly synonymous with community service and helping the youth and underserved in Bridgeton and Cumberland County.
The award-winning nonprofit executive and youth advocate is a native of Bridgeton, a graduate of HBCU Morgan State University and is currently the director of family and youth programs at Gateway Community Action Partnership.
“Call me crazy but I love to see people happy and succeeding,” Green told Front Runner New Jersey.com. “Life is a journey, not a competition.”
Green was born and raised in Bridgeton, the youngest daughter of Thelma D. Scott and Carl C. Seabrook Sr. After graduating from Bridgeton High School in 1976, she earned her bachelor’s degree from Morgan State in mental health.
She continued to pursue her education by attending the University of Pennsylvania and Rowan University, majoring in guidance and counseling. Green received a Master of Arts degree along with a certification as a school social worker.
At Gateway, Green oversees the Family Success Centers, Re-entry Initiatives, College/Career Readiness programs, and all other agency’s programs relating to youth and families.
She said she looks forward to planning and attending the annual HBCU college tour for high school students during their spring break.
“Our kids need exposure to make informed decisions about their future,” Green said. She added that “working for Gateway has been truly a blessing because of being given the opportunity to return to work in the community where I was born and raised.”
Green said she felt no need to leave Bridgeton because there are people in her hometown that could benefit from her expertise.
“I am just a simple country girl that doesn’t need much and grew up in Bridgeton when it had a real sense of community. Chasing the dream of a small community working together continues to motivate me to contribute and give back what has been given to me.”
Before working at Gateway, Green worked for the Kintock Group where she was instrumental in starting the program in Bridgeton from infancy and gaining the respect of the community in understanding the concept of community corrections. While at Kintock, many young people were given an opportunity to work and develop personally and professionally.
In 2006, Green founded Principles to Stand On, Inc., a non-profit organization that focused on developing community based programs for youth, such as gang prevention programs, after school programs and in the near future housing for youth.
Green worked five years at the Cumberland County Guidance Center and then the New Jersey Juvenile Justice Commission for 14 years in various supervisory positions.
Known for doing whatever it takes to better the community or someone’s life, Green gave years of service and personal time to Bridgeton.
“A callback and a direct answer or advice has gone a long way for others,” Green said. “When people seek assistance either you can help them or direct them to someone or a resource that will address their need.”
Green said she believes that everyone has apart to play in the community no matter how little or what their status is in that community. The diversity of people that she communicates with daily demonstrates how Green accepts people no matter where they are in life and provides support in accomplishing their goals or maintaining themselves.
In 2009, Green became a foster/resource parent under DCPP (formerly known as DYFS) and a co-facilitator for families working towards licensing their homes for children in need.
This experience has prompted her to serve as a “mentor “to the mothers of the children who have resided in her home. She is passionately known as “Mommy Carole” by her Godsons, Zaire and Leland, and all the boys placed into her home.
Green said there are two moments in which she cherishes since becoming a resource parent. The first moment, is when her first young man graduated from high school as the first child in his biological family to receive a high school diploma.
The other moment, was the acceptance and entrance of another young man into Rowan University.
Being a resource parent led Green to become a caregiver to Leland, a student of Bridgeton Public Schools, who was named Bulldog of the Month in April 2018.
With the support of her family and friends, Green provided the same opportunities for her “boys” as any other child. She believes her main responsibility is to ensure that each child that comes into her home receives a good education and to keep them safe.
Green was a charter member of the African American Unity Committee, past member of the Bridgeton Board of Education, served on the Board of Trustees of Cumberland County College and inducted into the Bridgeton High School Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame. Currently, she serves on the Federal Correctional Institution Community Relations Board in Fairton, and on the Temple Vision Board of Directors.
She has a lifetime commitment to Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. and Union Baptist Temple. She has been actively involved with her sorority and has made it possible for the youth in this county to participate in essay/scholarship contests and many other activities outside of school.
Green sponsors scholarships for graduating female students who have been accepted into college in memorial of students that loss their life while attending Bridgeton High School.
During the elections, Green is known to organize the community in getting out to vote, as well as, encouraging others, including family and friends, to stay focused and do their best.
“I am looking forward to working with the current young people that are making a difference in our community,” Green said. “Providing support, assisting them in growing their brand and offering resources and words of experience is my today.
“It keeps me involved at a level that is comfortable as I prepare to move on and allow this new generation to take the reign. They are doing the great work that needs to be continued with the support of community members. Being that role model and resource will help them to maximize their expertise and address the issues of today in our community.”
Green said her favorite scripture is Psalm 27. She considers her purpose in life is to be a servant to others that stand in the need of assistance.
She believes that one should always remain humble, treat others as you would want to be treated, give back to your community, and the Lord will give you all the desires of your heart.
Green said she is grateful and thankful for her family and friends for their continuous support, and loves the community for always believing in her. Bridgeton has benefited from Green’s caring and giving as well.
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