Good Neighborhoods Initiative Moves to Action

DETROIT - More than 350 families, community leaders and organizations are expected to join The Skillman Foundation on Saturday, March 11, to create positive change and choices for children in Southwest Detroit.

The Skillman Foundation's Good Neighborhoods Initiative, launched in January, gives neighborhood residents a forum for discussing and implementing positive change in their communities. The March 11th meeting, at Our Lady Queen of Angels Activity Hall at 4200 Martin, is the third of five community meetings in where residents have discussed important issues and identified priorities for improving the community.

"It's exciting to see the so many people come together - parents, professionals, young people and other stakeholders - who want this community to be a better place for children," said Carol Goss, President and CEO of The Skillman Foundation.

On Saturday, participants will chose one single community goal that will provide the specific need on which the community and The Foundations will focus their efforts.

The initiative's goal is to transform Detroit's neighborhoods into healthy, safe and supportive environments for children, youth, and their families by working directly with concerned citizens and organizations in specific neighborhoods. To achieve this agenda, The Skillman Foundation has reorganized its grantmaking and has strategically selected six neighborhoods to concentrate resources.

In addition to the Southwest Detroit community, The Skillman Foundation will also invite the communities of Chadsey/Condon, Cody/Rouge, Brightmoor, Central and Osborn to take part in this new program.

More than 65,000 children live in the neighborhoods that have been chosen, which make up about 30% of the child population in the city. Of that percentage, 50% of them live in poverty.

"I am optimistic that we will maintain the momentum, and that we will strengthen our partnership on behalf of kids." said Goss.

"We are excited by the interest and collaboration that the first meeting has fostered," said Tonya Allen, Program Director of The Skillman Foundation. "We love the commitment and energy of Southwest Detroit residents."

Created in 1960, the Skillman Foundation is a private philanthropy committed to helping children in metropolitan Detroit by improving their homes, schools and neighborhoods. Skillman grantmaking support nonprofit organizations, schools, and agencies in Wayne, Macomb, Oakland Counties, with a special emphasis on organizations workings in the city of Detroit.