The Extra Mile - March 2014: Donny Burnside/A Plus Computers

By Ngozi Rogers

March 12, 2014 Updated Mar 12, 2014 at 5:32 PM EST

Every month in 2014, a deserving person, family or organization will be paired with a local business or volunteer to help provide a need.

Meet Donny Burnside who suffered a stroke at age 3 months. This has caused Donny to struggle through many challenges but that hasn't stopped him. Even after receiving a completion degree from New Haven High School, his mother Karen Burnside says, "It just wasn't enough for him. He wanted a better future."

So Donny went to the Literacy Alliance to earn a GED because, "I want to get in to college and I knew a completion program didn't mean anything in college..." Two other attempts and eight years later, Donny's determination finally paid off. Several local businesses were so impressed with Donny's story of perseverance they decided to help celebrate his achievement.

Matt Schmidt, the owner of A Plus Computers on Parnell Avenue says, "Thinking someone went through eight years to get through high school... That's some serious motivation. It was touching." Which is why he gave Donny a laptop for his next challenge- college courses at Ivy Tech. Gordon Food Service will provide food for Donny's graduation party to be held at the historic Wabash Railroad Depot in New Haven donated by the New Haven Area Heritage Association.

Congratulations Donny!

As part of the Extra Mile program's mission to connect people to people and people to the community, all 2014 Extra Mile: Circle of Giving recipients will give back to our community by volunteering with local non-profit organizations, public agencies, schools, and ministries.

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