bonnie wells Teacher Shares Love Of Crafts With Troubled Teens

Bonnie Wells (WWJ Photo/Marie Osborne)

PONTIAC (WWJ)– The residents of Children’s Village in Oakland County are among the most troubled teens in the area, many are there following multiple run ins with the law, many have committed felonies. That’s where Bonnie Wells works as a math teacher.

Five years ago she wondered if she could share her love of hand crafts with her students and at the same time teach them a thing or two about giving.  Bonnie came up with the idea of teaching the students, most of them male, to crochet.

“I wanted the students to create something they could give to veterans, people who’d given so much for them,” she said.

Bonnie’s own son serves as a U.S. Marine.

The project started with her teaching one student to crochet, he taught other students and the project took off. Thirty of the 200 or so residents at Childrens’ Village participate in the “Freedom Isn’t Free” project, a privilege a resident has to earn with good behavior.

Hundreds of lap blankets have been given out to the Veterans Hospital in Ann Arbor as well as local senior citizen centers. “Many of these students make the choice to do this and hopefully it will lead to them making better choices when they get out of here,” Wells said.

childrens village2 Teacher Shares Love Of Crafts With Troubled Teens

Resident with blanket he made (WWJ Photo/Marie Osborne)

Wells buys hundreds of balls of yarn at a time at a discount thanks to donations and the Children’s Village foundation.

If you’d like to help, make cash donations to “Freedom Isn’t Free” at:

Children’s Village,
1200 N. Telegraph Road 63W
Pontiac, MI 48341


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