Volunteers from Blue Cross Blue Shield and Wayne County Executive office pitch in on neighborhood projects

EASTSIDE

SCHOOL BEAUTIFCATION:

Charles L. Spain Elementary-Middle School; 3700 Beaubien St.

Volunteers from Blue Cross Blue Shield turned work into fellowship as they worked tirelessly to clean the school its grounds. They pulled weeds, planted flowers and plants, and placed mulch around shrubs and trimming scrubs.

“This is our sixth year city-wide that Blue Cross Blue Shield has been involved,” said Danielle Gramling.BC/BS Team Lead and Project Coordinator for the Operation of Diversity Inclusion Committee. “We are proud to have an opportunity that empowers residence to play an active role in improving the health and prosperity of the entire community.”  The company provided 325 volunteers for 20 different projects citywide on Neighborhoods Day, in addition to clean-up supplies, tools, bags, plants and mulch.

 

COMMUNITY CELEBRATION AND TOUR

Church of the Messiah, 231 E. Grand Blvd.

The Islandview neighborhood tour, called the Islandview Rising, was packed with useful information about this proud community and led by Pastor  Barry Randolph.  The walking tour included one block of Field Street, off East Lafayette, where newly built, affordable houses owned by the church were highlighted, and a newly purchased building, now owned by the church that will be sold as a commercial building.

“Resurrection of the neighborhood by the people in the neighborhood,” said Rev. Randolph.

A lively yard sale with lots of activity was also in progress in front of the church.

“The church is the largest developer and employer in the neighborhood,” Rev. Randolph said. “The apartment building at the corner of Lafayette and E. Grand Blvd. was a drug-infested building until the church purchased the building in 1977.  It is now a 23-unit Faith of a Mustard Seed Co-op for families.

“I think Neighborhoods Day is an amazing event, and we make sure we celebrate our neighborhood every year,” said Tamika Hamilton, board president of the church. “It’s about becoming more than we were in the past.  The city has found a way to recreate itself in a positive way.”

 

ART FAIR

Belle Isle Art Fair – on Belle Isle near Scott Fountain

The Belle Isle Art Fair drew a crowd of hundreds of art lover.

The art fair celebrates the beauty of the city and the island with more than 100 artists from around the country.

With the theme “take home the beauty, we endeavor to bring the serenity of nature into everyone’s home,” said,  Mark Loeb, fair founder and organizer. .

“Food trucks, installations, tiki bar, and secret garden all contribute to the experience at Michigan’s most beautiful art fair.”

“Neighborhoods Day felt like a good way to showcase the event,” Loeb added. “ It’s only been recently that major businesses and corporations have begun to focus on neighborhoods and the inner city.”

 

YOUTH CLEANUP

Friends of the Detroit City Airport – 11499 Connor

Middle and high school students volunteered to clean the front of Detroit City Airport.   The students cleaned the greenway, flower beds and removed litter.  The students that volunteer received a free airplane ride, a T-shirt, and a model airplane.

“I’ve been a part of Neighborhoods Day since ((Mr. (Luther) Keith (and ARISE Detroit!)  was located on Field Street,” said Beverly Kindle-Walker, executive director of Friends of Detroit City Airport. “His mission was so purposeful; I had to be a part of it.”

 

HEALTH FAIR

 

100 Black Men of Greater Detroit – Peoples Community Church, 8601 Woodward Ave.

 100 Black Men of Greater Detroit and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan presented Man Up! For Good Health, a free health fair open to the public that included health screening, fitness and exercise training . There were a variety of fun, fitness activities, including a bike ride with the Grace Bike riders from Greater Grace Temple, a walk/run through Midtown Detroit, and Zumba classes. The fair also included nutrition, financial health and CPR training, kids activities, free food and a walk/run through Midtown Detroit.

“We target men, but many others benefit,” said Mark Elzy, chair of Health & Wellness, 100 Black Men. .  Because it’s Neighborhoods Day, now families come to the health fair.”

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