Joy Campbell – iSERVE with JOY

by Terry Watson | November 16th, 2020
Joy Campbell

Joy Campbell

Who is Joy Campbell? She never understood why some people have and some don’t. And making a difference in someone’s life has been at the forefront of her life, even as a child.”

Joy is also a young philanthropist, from Orangeburg, SC. She was birthed and raised by John and Jestine Campbell. After not having children for 11 years of marriage, her parents share that it seemed suiting to call their baby girl “Joy”.

Her name is fitting. As a child she was always giving, loving, and wanting to help others. Her parents also kept her very busy. “I was always involved with something. From choir, track, the North Charleston Police Cadets, JROTC, and more. My favorite of all activities was Outreach,” she shares. Her motto is, “love God and love God’s people”.

Growing up, Joy says she didn’t feel like she possessed a gift or special talent. She just loved to serve others. “I feel as if I spent half my life trying to figure out what I wanted to do, where do I fit in, and how can I make it,” she shared. Though there was one constant, Joy had a desire to serve others who were less fortunate.

Presently, Joy is the face of I SERVE with Joy. I SERVE with JOY aims to bring joy and love back into the community by providing care and assistance to the less fortunate. They specialize in serving the homeless, displaced teens, and single-parent families. It is their goal to bring joy to the community, one piece at a time, through engagement.

Joy got her program off the ground on October 16th 2016. “We were getting ready for our annual coat drive and this year was different. A few months prior we had sent 65 kids to prom. Their school wasn’t able to give one in the previous five years, and Hurricane Michael was on the break and we just wanted to make a difference,” Joy says.

With the ordeal of Covid-19, I SERVE with JOY has stepped into action. “We are doing our part in helping to stop the spread of COVID-19. Our current initiative “We Hear You” provides learners with wireless earphones to help them stay focused during virtual learning experience rather in person, or at home. We understand that it takes a village and we are that village. We appreciate the opportunity as it assists us to reach the needs of underserved youth in the greater Charleston area,” she says. Another program they have created is R.E.A.C.H. 2020, Rebuild (hearts), Empower (youth), Advance Communities, Help (underserved).

Serving her community and others is what Joy loves mostly. “I am one person with one dream to serve others. With your continued support, volunteering, and donations, iServeWithJoy will do more to serve the community and world,” she says.

Now that iSERVE with Joy is in their fourth year of operation, the challenges of serving are being realized. “I think my personal challenge is to accept the fact that we are growing and be OK with that. We are taking greater caution because of Covid 19 and doing everything in our power to help stop the spread. PPE is not cheap, and obtaining funding and sponsorships is always a priority,” she says.

What inspires Joy the most? “My life changed when my dad introduced me to Mr. Anthony Wright, legendary Charleston Peanut Man. At age 20 I went to work with Mr. Wright as a “Peanut Girl”. Through ups and downs he always told me, “you can be and do whatever you want”. That encouragement changed my whole life forever,” Joy said. “We could do any of this with the help and support of our volunteers. They really go the extra mile to make sure the vision comes to pass.”

In the future, Joy says her goal is to show people that serving others can be fun. “We will continue to do that in moderation due to COVID-19. I believe that when you serve there are two wins that happen; the person giving and the person receiving. As we grow, we will continue to create innovative ways to bring joy to communities near and far,” she says.

Presently, iSERVE with JOY are running behind with obtaining donations and are in need of help. She says that no donation is too small.

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