On April 15th, 2021, Detroit Phoenix Center launched its twelve-week Life Skills Program. The learning initiative targets youth ages 16-24 who have previous or current experiences with housing instability. Youth enrolled in the Life Skills Program learn a variety of skills which include basic daily skills from washing clothes and scheduling appointments to more difficult tasks such as applying for housing. Over the course of twelve weeks, the program focused on developing and improving the following:
Mental Health Awareness
Sexual Health Education
Workforce and Educational Development
Housing Rights and Responsibilities
Each enrolled youth received a new laptop computer, weekly grocery support, transportation support and was assisted with case management. The program was sponsored through a grant from United Way for Southeastern Michigan. We have many partners such as Gleaners Cooking Matters facilitating a six-week nutrition course and TCF Bank facilitating a nine-week financial literacy course.
As COVID-19 numbers rose we pivoted the program from a hybrid program to completely virtual. In order to continue to break barriers, we have begun delivering warm meals, programming needs, groceries, and technology support directly to the homes of enrolled participants. We are especially proud of our team and their commitment to low-barrier programming.
Due to the extensive flooding that began in Detroit and the Metro Area on June 26th, we had to postpone the graduation celebration for the program. Youth and families were affected by flooding and power outages. Detroit Phoenix Center’s Drop-In Resource Center at the Bethel Community Transformation Center on Woodward Ave sustained flood damage as well. A picnic-themed celebration was finally rescheduled and held on July 14th with the help of Detroit Picnic Company. During this celebration, youth enjoyed lunch and play games such as Uno, Jumbo Jenga, Jumbo Connect Four, and Corn Hole. A small award ceremony was held to present youth with their certificates of completion as well as a $1000 stipend each.
Detroit Phoenix Center is so proud of our Life Skills Graduates and thankful to all who supported and contributed to educational programming in any way. We can’t wait for the opportunity to hold the next twelve-week Life Skills Program.
Stay tuned for a virtual invitation!