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Helping Out At City Mission


That was the call to action last Saturday as dozens of volunteers from near and far came out to City Mission in Detroit to fill food baskets.

Last November, we introduced you to City Mission when we went out to help fill 1,000 food baskets for families in desperate, desperate need.  This time, although our enthusiasm was enormous, the supply wasn’t.  There was only enough food to fill 400 baskets.

So much, yet so little.

And the thought that so many would receive nothing was heartbreaking. However, what was far from heartbreaking was the sheer and utter relentless determination of the staff of this facility (which includes City Mission Academy, a school supporting kids through fifth grade, and City Covenant Church) who organized this event.  They were, and are, dedicated, fearless, and motivating.

We ran into a bunch of folks from Plymouth, Canton, and Northville out this chilly day – and every pair of hands, no matter what age, was welcome and helpful.  In the photo below, that’s Lee Bittinger in the beige jacket in front and Noel in the green sweatshirt behind him, to his right.  Our Social Media Manager, Maria, is in the purple jacket on the far right and our Listing Specialist, Carly Richards, is to her right in black.  And Maria brought her husband and three kids too, so The Bittinger Team was well represented!

Two trucks from Forgotten Harvest brought in the supplies. Meanwhile, dozens of volunteers unloaded the trucks, fire-brigade style.  The kids, as young as six, worked every bit as hard as anyone!

It’s always rewarding to see the baskets filled and ready for delivery (wish there were more!).  The same folks who filled them had the opportunity to deliver them right to the homes of the recipients (if they chose to).

Now, we just have to tell you this extraordinary and extremely cool detail:  the teachers and administrators of the school don’t just work there, they LIVE there – the Brightmoor neighborhood of Detroit.  This neighborhood is just east of Outer drive and north of Schoolcraft, so it’s closer than you think.

The Mission’s “Mission”

Here’s what City Mission is all about:

Our mission is to break the cycle of generational poverty in Brightmoor by meeting the educational, physical and spiritual needs of children through mentoring relationships and outreach programs that make life-change possible.  City Mission has labored  to change the outcome of families in Brightmoor by providing tutoring, mentoring and outreach programs to at-risk children.

Yes, there is something you can do!

If you’ve been thinking about reaching out and giving a hand, give City Mission some consideration.

  • One Saturday morning a month is a scheduled Work Day and they could use your help.
  • Every Friday afternoon they distribute food to 150 households who come to City Covenant Church and they could use your help.
  • Like football?  Be a coach, referee, or helper in their Saturday Flag Football League, August to November.
  • Donate to the Back-To-School Clothing and Backpack Initiative – they need a lot.
  • Be a tutor in the evenings.
  • Or, help deliver food to their neighbors the Saturday before Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.

And, of course, if you can help financially then you are making a difference.  They have lost so much funding and, as a result, they have had to cut their middle school grades out of the City Mission Academy.  Luckily, they have a good place to send those kids and, luckily, they can still offer support and education through fifth grade.

Their new Build a Foundation program is based on a $1 a day donation – $30 a month for “1 Brick” – more or less welcome too.  If you would like to donate, please visit them online or contact them by telephone at 313.541.3531 or contact for additional information.  Check them out on Facebook too!

Forgotten Harvest

And here’s a plug for Forgotten Harvest, an amazing organization that rescues perfectly decent food that would otherwise have been thrown in the dumpster and gets it to agencies that can share it among families who are struggling.  Visit them at their website for information about what they do and how to help, and follow them on Facebook too.

Maybe we’ll be seeing YOU around City Mission soon?



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