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“We are a broad-based coalition of community groups. Our mission is to launch a new wave of volunteerism for the many worth while programs and activities that are struggling with the issues that trouble our community – illiteracy, high school dropout rates, crime and youth violence, drug abuse, domestic abuse, neighborhood blight and unemployment.
It is our belief that everyone can play a role and render service, thereby having a greater impact on solving these chronic problems. Our goal is to unite the entire community — nonprofit organizations, churches, schools, the business community and the media — in an unprecedented call to action.
This movement is about making a personal commitment for change at a critical time in our city’s history. We invite you to be part of this historic effort.”
Believe in Detroit
“Founded in New York City on September 10, 2009 by 17 mayors from cities around the nation, Cities of Service is a bipartisan coalition of mayors who have committed to work together to lead a multi-year effort to expand impact volunteerism. The coalition has rapidly grown since its inception and now includes more than 100 mayors, representing more than 49 million Americans across the nation.
Public Safety - Challenge: Increase a sense of security/safety in the community by deterring criminal behavior.
1. Citizen’s Radio Patrol – Neighborhood Protection
2. Eyes & Ears Program – Neighborhood Protection
Neighborhood Restoration - Challenge: Increase the beautification of public spaces.
1. Urban Gardens - Blight Elimination
2. Urban Tree Planting – Increase the beautification/“greening” of public spaces
Literacy - Challenge: Improve the City’s literacy rate. Detroit Service will address literacy by strategically engaging volunteers for the Detroit Public School’s (DPS) Reading Corps, and Detroit Reads! program sponsored by the Public Library. ”
Metropolitan Organizing Strategy Enabling Strength
MOSES is a group of diverse congregations that organizes communities develops leaders and builds relationships to advocate for social justice.
Focused on quality of life, MOSES is an advocate for issues such as:
Equitable allocation and distribution of public funds
Equal opportunities for quality public education
Equal access to public transportation
Equal opportunity for full and meaningful employment
Safe and healthy neighborhoods in which to live
United Way of Southeastern Michigan
The United Way works to coordinate the efforts of Health and Human Service providers in Southeast Michigan.
If you are interested in volunteering its website provides a great service as a searchable database of opportunities for many local organizations.
The Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services
The Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS) has been serving the community for over 35 years, and is proud to be one of the nation’s premier Arab American organizations. Started by a group of volunteers in 1971 out of a storefront in Dearborn’s impoverished south end, ACCESS was created to assist the Arab immigrant population adapt to life in America.
Now, with seven locations and over 90 programs, ACCESS offers a plethora of services to a diverse population, regardless of ethnicity. It is ACCESS’ mission to provide economic and social services to Arab immigrants, Arab Americans, and non-Arabs alike.
ACCESS’ six service-oriented departments and dozens of programs each work to achieve this mission in a distinct way. We are proud to serve our community on all levels—from assisting individuals in finding jobs at our Employment & Training Department and helping immigrants adjust to life in our Social Services Department; to helping families with medical illnesses at our Community Health & Research Center and building a better future by helping our youth through our Youth & Education Department.
ACCESS strength rests with the strength of our community - both individually and collectively. We are only able to aid those in need, advocate for fair treatment, and celebrate our cultures with the generosity of our supporters. Find out more about how you can help us change lives today, and build a legacy for tomorrow.
"Recognizing the dignity and beauty of every person, we pledge intelligent and practical action to overcome racism, poverty and injustice. And to build a metropolitan community where all people may live in freedom, harmony, trust and affection. Black and white, yellow, brown and red from Detroit and its suburbs of every economic status, national origin and religious persuasion we join in this covenant."
—Focus Hope Mission Statement
Focus: HOPE is a non-denominational, non-profit public foundation who seeks to accomplish this mission by providing education and training for underrepresented minorities and others. The organization is Detroit based, but provides services across the Metro-Detroit area.
Focus: HOPE enlists the support of volunteers for all sorts of projects -- from boarding up abandoned homes to delivering food to senior citizens. It's a mutually beneficial relationship. Our community benefits from the work of our volunteers -- and the volunteers gain a new perspective on racism, poverty and the issues facing our society.
Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit
Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit provides people who have disabilities and other barriers to employment with opportunities to become independent, self-supporting citizens through training, work experience and employment in the community.
If you are interested in learning more visit their website:
Latin Americans for Social and Economic Development
Latin Americans for Social and Economic Development, Inc. (LA SED) is a nonprofit agency serving Latinos and residents of Southwest Detroit.
Since its founding in 1969, LA SED has served over 400,000 individuals, most of who have been low-income and have limited English proficiency. Our wide range of services include advocacy - the core of our assistance - translation and interpretation, information and referral services, and services for seniors, youth, and families.
LASED has serviced this community for almost 40 years serving approximately 11,000 unduplicated individuals each year. There is hardly a person in Metro Detroit or Michigan whose family, friends, or own life has not been touched by LA SED's services. Every member of our board is or was a resident of our neighborhood. Many members of our staff are former clients. Because of this longstanding role serving people at all stages of life, LA SED has a unique ability to mobilize and engage local residents.
At LA SED, we believe that by working together we can make a difference.
National Association of the Advancement of Colored People
Throughout Detroit’s history the NAACP has been a leading voice in the promotion of Civil Rights, Criminal Justice, Economics and Education for all residents.
“From courtroom lawsuits to boardroom negotiations, from picket lines to economic boycotts, from schoolrooms to factory floors, the Detroit Branch NAACP has demanded justice and civil rights. We seek not merely a superficial procedural justice, but a substantive, deeper form of justice that derives from the very spirit upon which this country was founded.
We would like to thank you for visiting our website and would like to encourage you to seek membership and become involved in the never-ending battle for the "Fight For Freedom."
Young Detroit Builders
“Young Detroit Builders is a YouthBuild USA-affiliated, non-profit organization that has been offering a comprehensive program of education, support services, counseling, leadership development, job and life skills preparation, on-the-job residential construction training and NCCER certification since 1996. Students can earn a modest living allowance while participating in this full-time, 10-month training program, and may be eligible for AmeriCorps educational awards for college. Giving back to the community is a major focus of YDB, and students complete community service projects throughout the program. Upon completion, job placement and follow-up assistance is provided. YDB is also part of the Partnership for Permanent Supportive Housing, a coalition of three agencies, which takes a holistic approach to meeting the needs of Detroit’s low-income and homeless population.Young Detroit Builders (YDB) strives to unleash the positive energy of unemployed young adults to rebuild their communities and their own lives with a commitment to work, education, responsibility and family. Here at Young Detroit Builders, we rebuild communities, while transforming lives.”
Black Family Development, Inc.
Covenant House Michigan is a sanctuary for young people who have nowhere to go. Kids who come to our doors have been abused and neglected, have slept on friends' couches or in abandoned buildings. These kids have been forgotten by those who are supposed to care about them the most.
When they come through our gates, they become part of a family. Our staff, volunteers and donors carry out our mission based on faith and the belief that all of God's children deserve unconditional love, respect and hope.
Self-Help Addiction Rehabilitation
Since 1969, Self-Help Addiction Rehabilitation, Inc. (SHAR) has provided the needed substance abuse services for the residents of the City of Detroit and its surrounding suburbs. SHAR’s programs are nationally known, and commonly thought of as “tough”. We do not apologize for that – it has been designed that way. We recognize the devastation that the disease of addiction causes on our society, communities, and our families. We feel the pain of parents who have lost their children and children who have no parents. We have met the brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, neighbors, co-workers and the many others who have watched addiction steal away an individuals potential and their dreams. It is true: addiction changed them into someone they didn’t want to be. SHAR provides the answer to a tough problem. Since its inception, SHAR’s mission has remained “the establishment and operation of quality substance abuse treatment facilities and programs providing necessary support services for all clients …, regardless of their ability to pay”.
We serve approximately 1500 individuals annually through three primary treatment locations, a long-term transitional facility, and two prison sites.
SHAR is a Therapeutic Community; one of only a few in Michigan. The treatment philosophy is based on the Therapeutic Community (TC) model with the primary agent of change being the community. We believe in self-help, behavioral change, tough love, empathy and other principles that promote personal growth and responsibility.
Neighborhood Service Organization
Neighborhood Service Organization (NSO) was established in 1955 as a private non-profit human service agency. The Mission of NSO is to provide diverse and innovative community development programs and community services to meet the changing needs of the regions population. Prevention and training are fundamental components of our programs. These components empower consumers and enhance the skills of other professionals.
NSO makes a difference in the lives of literally thousands of residents of Wayne and Oakland County. In fact,
NSO is the largest organization in the state serving older adults with mental illness
NSO is the only 24-hour/7 days a week organization serving homeless people who have nowhere else to go due to behavioral difficulties, mental illness or because they are wheelchair bound
NSO is one of the largest organizations in Detroit and seven surrounding communities serving children and adults with development disabilities
NSO's youth violence prevention program is a premier program offering leadership training so that youth can work, peer to peer, with other youth to prevent gun violence and substance abuse among Detroit children
NSO 's unique system of locating units where problems exist in the community allows exceptional flexibility in meeting the needs of underserved people. It allows the use of creative programs, therapies and assistance for those who, after all is said and done, are still crying out for help.
Alternatives for Girls
“Alternatives For Girls (AFG) is a Detroit-based 501(c)3 nonprofit serving homeless and high-risk girls and young women. Since 1987, AFG has provided critical services to the girls and young women we serve, including safe shelter, street outreach and educational support, vocational guidance, mentoring, prevention activities, and counseling. The goal is to empower the girls and young women we serve to make positive choices.
Our mission is to help homeless and high-risk girls and young women avoid violence, teen pregnancy and exploitation, and help them to explore and access the support, resources and opportunities necessary to be safe, to grow strong and to make positive choices in their lives.”
Capuchin Soup Kitchen
Since its founding in 1929, the Capuchin Soup Kitchen has served Metro Detroit by providing food, clothing and nourishment for the soul and spirit. True to our Franciscan heritage, when a need has been uncovered, the Capuchin Soup Kitchen has responded to that need. Current programs include:
Coalition on Temporary Shelter
“COTS exists to alleviate homelessness by providing an array of services that enable people to achieve self sufficiency and obtain quality affordable housing. COTS also exists to advocate for long-term solutions to the problem of homelessness.
On an average night in Detroit, more than 10,000 individuals and families are homeless. COTS Emergency Shelter operates at or near capacity consistently throughout the year, providing approximately 50,000 shelter nights each year to about 2,800 homeless individuals and families. Presently, the state of Michigan is ranked fifth in national homelessness polls.”
Christ Child House
“Christ Child House is a private non-profit organization, nationally accredited by the Council on Accreditation for Children and Families. Owned and operated by the Christ Child Society of Detroit, Christ Child House is funded by Christ Child Society, governmental fees, private donations, foundations, and grants.
The mission of Christ Child House is to provide quality professional and comprehensive treatment programs for children and families at risk through therapeutic services focused on individual treatment. Christ Child House's philosophy "It's never too late to have a happy childhood" guides the agency in its special mission.”
Detroit Rescue Mission Ministry
“The Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries is a non-profit organization committed to sharing the gospel of the love of Jesus Christ by providing hope to the hopeless, abused, disadvantaged and homeless men, women and children of our community in "rebuilding one life at a time". By ministering to the total person, body, soul and spirit, together we can help them to become faithful Christians discipled into a local church, rehabilitated, employed and living productive lives in restored families.”
Forgotten Harvest & Gleaners
“The mission of Forgotten Harvest is to relieve hunger in the Detroit metropolitan community by rescuing surplus, prepared and perishable food and donating it to emergency food providers.
Forgotten Harvest was formed in 1990 to fight two problems: hunger and waste.”
Matrix Human Services
“Inspired by its heritage since 1906, Matrix Human Services advocates for and serves the most vulnerable in the metropolitan Detroit community and empowers individuals and families to enhance the quality of their lives and achieve self sufficiency.
Matrix Human Services, is a… social service organization offering a range of programs devoted to maintaining and supporting the family unit and improving the quality of life for individuals of all ages. Matrix believes strongly in offering positive life experiences, assistance with basic needs, education and supportive services which defuse crisis, treat individual and family problems and prevent abuse, neglect or criminal activities.”
Ruth Ellis Center
Ruth Ellis Center is the only mission specific agency in the entire Midwest dedicated to LGBTQ, (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-atractional, Transgender and Questioning) youth. The Center provides residential and drop-in programs. LGBTQ youth need helpers and advocates who get “it.” We get it. We understand their needs and help them find pathways to safety and independence.
Ruth Ellis Center operates three programs:
Second Stories, our Street Outreach Program and Drop-Center serves youth and young adults ages 14 to 24.
The Ruth’s House has two residential programs, serving LGBTQ youth in need of safe and supportive living conditions. The transitional living program serves young adults 16 to 21; Young people ages 12 to 17 are served through a semi-independent living program
Motor City Blight Busters
In its remarkable 18 year history, Motor City Blight Busters in conjunction with its coalition
of community partners can proudly claim 120,000 volunteers, who have contributed more than
658,000 volunteer hours to paint 684 homes, board up and secure 379 abandoned buildings,
renovate 176 houses and build 114 new ones to make suitable housing for 1,160 people.
In the process, they used 21,000 gallons of paint, 15,500 pounds of nails and 15,470 sheets of plywood.
They demolished 113 houses with sledgehammers and people power and undertook 3,850
neighborhood clean-ups, that resulted in 1,550 dumpsters of trash and 70,000 garbage bags.
Blight Busters fed 350 people at its first annual Thanksgiving dinner, provided space for 300 students to learn building trades and culinary arts at ACCOSS Training Center in the Motor City Resource Center and offered free health screening to 500 citizens.
Always working to bridge the gap between groups, Motor City Blightbusters has hosted more than 500 suburban teens over the last two years who volunteered for inner city projects through the "Summer in the City" program, brought together 150 people in the JACOB (the Jewish and Chaldean Opportunity Builders) to assist in projects and helped 20 urban teen-age girls find fun and healthy activities in another Motor City Blight Busters program, Girlfriendz.
Citizens Alliance on Prisons and Public Spending
“The Citizens Alliance on Prisons and Public Spending, a non-profit public policy organization, is concerned about Michigan’s excessive use of punitive strategies rather than preventive ones to deal with crime and its impact on our quality of life. Because policy choices, not crime rates, determine corrections spending, CAPPS advocates re-examining those policies and shifting our resources to services that prevent crime, rehabilitate offenders and address the needs of all our citizens in a cost-effective manner. To achieve these goals, CAPPS develops data-driven proposals for reducing the prison population while ensuring public safety. It informs policymakers, advocacy groups, affected communities and the general public about these issues through numerous means, including a website, a newsletter, research reports, legislative testimony and speaking appearances.”
Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality
The mission of the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality is to mobilize a powerful, visible local, national and international protest against brutality and institutional violence. We aim to unite and support those most directly affected by police brutality and to involve other sectors of society in this fight. We will strengthen our communities’ capacity for resistance in a variety of ways, including the documentation of cases of police brutality and murder, educational forums, cultural projects, legal support, demonstrations and media outreach. We will support other organizations and individuals committed to the same goals.
Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM)
Families Against Mandatory Minimums is the national voice for fair and proportionate sentencing laws. We shine a light on the human face of sentencing, advocate for state and federal sentencing reform, and mobilizing thousands of individuals and families whose lives are adversely affected by unjust sentences.
FAMM’s vision is a nation in which sentencing is individualized, humane and sufficient but not greater than necessary to impose just punishment, secure public safety and support successful rehabilitation and re-entry.
FAMM’s national membership includes prisoners and their families, attorneys, judges, criminal justice experts and concerned citizens.
Founded on March 16, 2002, LEAP is made up of current and former members of the law enforcement and criminal justice communities who are speaking out about the failures of our existing drug policies. Those policies have failed, and continue to fail, to effectively address the problems of drug abuse, especially the problems of juvenile drug use, the problems of addiction, and the problems of crime caused by the existence of a criminal black market in drugs.
Although those who speak publicly for LEAP are people from the law enforcement and criminal justice communities, a large number of our supporting members do not have such experience. You don't have to have law enforcement experience to join us.
By continuing to fight the so-called "War on Drugs", the US government has worsened these problems of society instead of alleviating them. A system of regulation and control of these substances (by the government, replacing the current system of control by the black market) would be a less harmful, less costly, more ethical and more effective public policy.
Please consider joining us and helping us to achieve our goals: 1) to educate the public, the media and policy makers about the failure of current policies, and 2) to restore the public's respect for police, which respect has been greatly diminished by law enforcement's involvement in enforcing drug prohibition.
The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is a nonprofit, non-partisan, free market think tank headquartered in Midland, Michigan. The Center’s stated mission is "improving the quality of life for all Michigan citizens by promoting sound solutions to state and local policy questions” by assisting "policy makers, scholars, business people, the media and the public by providing objective analysis of Michigan issues” with the goal of helping “to equip Michigan citizens and other decision makers to better evaluate policy options."
The Mackinac Center conducts policy research on a broad range of public policy issues. It also conducts educational programs such as workshops for high school debate students and sponsors MichiganVotes.org, a comprehensive online legislative voting record database. They also provide educational research at EducationReport.org, including a database of information on Michigan schools and 3 downloadable books that provide education on Michigan’s tax policy.
Michigan Campaign for Justice
The Campaign for Justice is a broad-based group of organizations and individuals from across the political spectrum fighting for a fair and effective public defense system in Michigan.
We believe that legislative reform is needed to improve cost effectiveness, protect the public’s safety and ensure one's Constitutional right to counsel.
Together, we will:
Build a broad-based network of organizations that share the vision of a justice system that works for all
Educate policymakers and the public about the need for reform; and
Win passage of legislation that fixes Michigan’s broken public defense system.
Please note that the Campaign for Justice does not provide legal advice or referral.
Michigan Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion
“Since 1941 The Michigan Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion has been a not-for-profit civil rights organization located in Detroit working to overcome discrimination and racism by crossing racial, religious, ethnic and cultural boundaries. We bring together community leaders from government, law enforcement, education, faith, grass roots organizations and business to understand different points of view and then take action to overcome structural impediments to inclusion and equity. Our programs are recognized by national organizations for bringing about sustainable change. We work to address inequity throughout our region through a process of recognition, reconciliation/reorientation and renewal. We strive to build relationships that create social justice and build sustainable inclusive communities.”
Milton S. Eisenhower Foundation
The Milton S. Eisenhower Foundation is the international, non-profit continuation of National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (the Kerner Riot Commission- after the big city riots of the 1960s) and the National Commissions on the Caused and Prevention of Violence (the National Violence Commission- after the assassinations of the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. And Senator Bobby Kennedy). We Identify, fund, evaluate, build the capacities of and replicate multiple solution ventures for the inner city, the truly disadvantaged, children, youth and families. Through national policy reports, the Foundation communicates what works (and what doesn’t) to citizens, media and decision makers. We run a strategic communications school for nonprofit organization staff and youth to help change political will and create action.
American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan
“The Constitution established the Bill of Rights to protect our individual civil liberties from encroachment by the government. These rights and freedoms are the cornerstone of our democracy, and define what makes us American. The ACLU fights for civil liberties and believes they must always be respected, even in times of national emergency. The ACLU works in the Courts, in Congress and at the grassroots level to defend the Constitution wherever it is threatened.”
“New Detroit's mission is "to work as the coalition of Detroit area leadership addressing the issue of race relations by positively impacting issues and policies that ensure economic and social equity." The coalition is comprised of leaders from civil rights & advocacy organizations, human services, health & community organizations, business, labor, foundations, education, and the media and serves as a private, non-profit, tax-exempt organization.”
Founded by Dr. Gerald K. Smith in 1999 (as Detroit Youth Foundation), YouthVille is more than a youth facility – it is a concept, a new approach to developing youth and enhancing their well-being.
Among its many programs YouthVille provides:
Classes in the areas of Education, Leadership Development, Service Learning Cultural and Fine Arts (including Spoken Word Poetry, Fashion Design, Ceramics, and much more).
Opportunities for young people to create a comprehensive career track in the area of digital media arts and technology (Including Web-Design, Video Production, Web-Radio and more).
A broad network of resources for members and families through the collaboration of many on-site services and community based agencies for the welfare and betterment of youth. Its programs focus on life skill development and a proactive approach to promoting health and well-being while fostering positive relationships with caring adults.
Detroit Reading Corps
Every resident of Detroit, Highland Park, and Hamtramck should have the opportunity to be an informed citizen, a supportive and involved parent, a viable employee, and a lifelong learner. Pro-Literacy Detroit makes this possible through the recruitment, training, innovative, goal-driven tutoring programs.
You can volunteer at
Mosaic Youth Theatre
Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit is an internationally acclaimed youth development program that concentrates on helping young artists excel on stage and in life. Mosaic's mission is to empower young people to maximize their potential through professional performing arts training and the creation of first-rate theatrical and musical art.
Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit, founded by Rick Sperling in 1992, was born out of a need to fill the gaps in arts education in metro Detroit schools while providing an artistic home for young actors, singers, and stage technicians. Serving only 25 young artists without any budget or home in its inaugural year, Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit is now recognized as a highly regarded cultural treasure for the city of Detroit and southeast Michigan. Mosaic's national and international touring performances bring recognition to Detroit as a center for arts and culture and promote a positive image of metro Detroit area youth.
Matrix Theatre Company
MISSION - Matrix Theatre Company uses the transformative power of theatre to change lives, build community, and foster social justice. It creates opportunities for children, youth, adults and elders, especially those in isolated or challenged communities, to become creators, producers, and audience of original theatre.
VISION - As a cultural anchor of southwest Detroit, Matrix Theatre Company is nationally recognized as a socially engaged theatre that transforms individuals and revitalizes community through original artistic work.”
Eagle Sports Clubs
Mission: “Building Life-Changing Relationships through sports, camps and tutoring”
ESC is a Christian-based organization that is working with children and families to revitalize neighborhoods, restore parks and encourage spiritual revival. In doing so, Eagle Sports Club has an opportunity to mentor children in a natural setting.
Number of Expected Participants: Over 2000
Number of Volunteers Needed: 275-300
Programs Offered: Tutoring, Sports Spring and fall Soccer, spring and fall flag football, summer baseball and indoor soccer, camps, Kids Across America, summer day camps for soccer, baseball, wrestling and football
Number of Lives Touched: COUNTLESS