School district receives donation

By: Maria Allard | Warren Weekly | Published March 8, 2019

 The We Are Here Foundation recently donated 100 table desks to Center Line Public Schools for state testing purposes.

The We Are Here Foundation recently donated 100 table desks to Center Line Public Schools for state testing purposes.

Photo provided by Charlie Roddis

CENTER LINE — When Michigan lawmakers changed the standardized testing dates for middle school and high school students, Center Line Public Schools officials found themselves in a bit of a quandary.

Students are now required to take the mandatory tests at the same time. CLPS educators did not have enough testing tables to accommodate students at Wolfe Middle School, Center Line High School and the district’s hybrid virtual learning program, Academy 21.

CLPS Chief Financial Officer Charlie Roddis said the district needed 180 desk tables to house all the students for testing, which would cost the district $8,000. In an effort to save money, Roddis contacted the We Are Here Foundation for furniture.

The nonprofit organization, based in Macomb County, was able to help out and recently donated 100 tables to the district at no cost. While CLPS officials still had to purchase 80 tables for the testing, which Roddis said cost the district about $3,000, they appreciated the assistance from the We Are Here Foundation.

“We just want to publicly thank the foundation and Tom Cleaver for all his help in obtaining these tables for us,” Roddis said, adding that the district has received other furniture from the foundation over the last few years. In the summer of 2017, for instance, foundation volunteers donated approximately $12,000-$15,000 worth of equipment to CLPS.

“We donate brand-new office furniture to needy school districts and nonprofit organizations in southeastern Michigan,” We Are Here Foundation Manager Tom Cleaver said. “What we can do to help out school districts, we’ll do it.”

Cleaver said the table desks donated to CLPS are 2 feet by 3 feet in size, with rounded-off corners.

“The legs are standard metal and the other two legs are on rollers,” Cleaver said. “They move around very easily. Each table fits two students.”

The We Are Here Foundation receives donations of desks, file cabinets, chairs, whiteboards and more from two sources. Brand-new items come from the office supply retailing corporation Staples.

The foundation also receives used items from Green Standards, a specialized environmental firm that works with corporations and organizations to redistribute no-longer-needed surplus office furniture, equipment and supplies.

The We Are Here Foundation not only provides school furniture, but also participates in waterway cleanup and youth education groups. The foundation’s primary source of income comes from donated boats and cars. Monetary donations are also welcome.

For more information on the We Are Here Foundation or to make a donation, call (586) 463-9400 or visit