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December 2017 Newsletter – Michigan Community Action

Michigan Community Action


MCA Catalyst – December 2017
See newsletter for full story on each of these items

Abandoned orphanage to welcome new residents

People who were once homeless and an abandoned structure that once housed orphans are both being restored, thanks to a major economic development project by Community Action Alger Marquette (CAAM).  For the past three years, CAAM has worked to resurrect and renovate the dilapidated Holy Family Orphanage in Munising, which was originally built in 1915.  It was a huge, crumbling building that more than 100 years ago was home to hundreds of children.  It had been vacant since 1981, and in recent years local homeless people often sought shelter there.  Now it has been reborn as affordable apartments...

The renovation began in August 2016 through a partnership between Home Renewal Systems, CAAM and investors Old National Bank of Indianapolis and InSite Capital. The project received strong community support and created more than 100 local construction jobs.

Senior Companions celebrate 34 years of service

For more than three decades, seniors in Menominee, Delta and Schoolcraft counties have served as Senior Companions, volunteering to spend time with fellow area seniors.  Dorothy Sahn of Escanaba was recognized for her 16-year service record along with more than 40 of her volunteer peers at a luncheon held by the Menominee-Delta Schoolcraft Community Action Agency (MDSCAA).  Sahn was named “Companion of the Year” and recieved the Gilbert Sablack Award for volunteer work at Christian Park Village in Escanaba...

MCA develops "preferred future"

More than 20 MCA members, staff and partners outlined the association’s “Agenda for a Preferred Future” Nov. 30 during a strategic planning session at the Michigan Community Action headquarters...

Before the “Preferred Future” session, nearly 40 members came together to outline MCA’s 2018 summer conference educational content Nov. 29.  The group created subject matter tracks, including CAA board training, ROMA/CSBG, HR/fiscal management, energy programs, technology, best practices, community development, communications and advocacy – see conference information.

Affordable new housing inspires neighborhood improvements

In a depressed neighborhood in Petoskey, a new home has risen with Community Action and Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) help, and is ready to house a family.  Meanwhile, it is helping improve home values on the block.  The newly constructed home was built with green technology, which will save future residents' money and build their long-term assets.  The 1,440-square-foot home can be heated for just $47 a year...

Warm Hearts, Warm Homes raises funds for families

For the past three years, more than 30,000 families stayed warm during the winter thanks to the Warm Hearts, Warm Homes campaign.  Coordinated by Central Michigan University Public Radio, the campaign is back for its fourth year and plans to raise $67,000 to meet a corporate match offer by Consumers Energy and Isabella Bank.  The funds are given to Michigan Community Action to be distributed through its agencies to residents in need.

Did you know?

In 2014, about 49,000 jobs in Michigan were unfilled, according to the Michigan Manufacturers Association, due in part to a lack of qualified candidates.  Michigan’s high school dropout rate is nearly 9 percent, according to Michigan Center for Educational Performance and Information.  By investing in early childhood education, more children will complete high school and post-secondary education.  Education programs for children from birth to age three can deliver longer-term benefits including higher work force participation, earnings and reduced crime.

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