News & Updates from A Time to Help

Success Marks the First A Time to Help Project Of The Year

Success Marks the First A Time to Help Project Of The Year

UTICA — The final tally was impressive: 1,281 soup mixes and 334 spice bags.

S.A.Y. Detroit’s A Time to Help army of volunteers held their first project of the year Saturday (Jan. 20) at Motown Soup in Utica, packaging dry soups and other products with the sole intention of helping others in need.

All proceeds from the sales of the soups becomes needed funding for nonprofits to do their work, including S.A.Y. Detroit’s operating partner — the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries — which received over $17,000 in funding in 2017, said Dan Karlin, Motown Soup’s longtime volunteer facilitator.

For more than three hours, nearly 40 volunteers, including more than a half dozen who were making Saturday’s project their first-ever ATTH event, were part of several assembly lines packaging, sealing and labeling Motown Soup’s best-selling soups such as Chicken Pot Pie, Tomato Basil, Beef Barley with Vegetables, Lemon Orzo and Chicken Noodle.

“It’s a larger group than we normally have, but we’re happy to see you,” Karlin said. “Your volunteers are eager and are trained well.”

Paul and Janet Skowronski, a recently retired couple from Fraser, registered for Saturday’s event after making last month’s Salvation Army Christmas Party their inaugural ATTH volunteer project.

“Our kids came with us, and it was so much fun that we wanted to do another event,” Janet Skowronski said. “We’re retired, and we’re trying to find things to do. We also do Meals on Wheels on Mondays. It makes you very grateful.”

More information on Motown Soup, including how to purchase its products, can be found atmotownsoup.com.

ATTH’s next project is February 17 at Arts & Scraps. Registration for that product will begin Tuesday at atimetohelp.org.

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20th Christmas Party for shelter residents and children a holiday hit

20th Christmas Party for shelter residents and children a holiday hit

It was the 20th anniversary edition — and what a party it was.

More than 80 A Time to Help volunteers helped make Mitch Albom’s annual S.A.Y. Detroit/The Salvation Army Christmas Party for shelter residents and their children a morning to remember.

Led by Albom and Ken Brown, Albom’s radio show co-host, the event on Saturday (Dec. 2) at The Salvation Army Harbor Light in Detroit was filled with merry making and smiles, thanks to a plethora of activities, food and fun — all supervised by ATTH’s largest volunteer core of the year. (more…)

S.A.Y. Clinic Celebrates Residents, Attracts New Patients, at Health Fair

S.A.Y. Clinic Celebrates Residents, Attracts New Patients, at Health Fair

HIGHLAND PARK, MI — For more than two hours Saturday (Sept. 16), the parking lot just outside the doors of the S.A.Y. Detroit Family Health Clinic was transformed into a vibrant gathering spot for the community.

Called “Healthy Food = Healthy Women,’’ S.A.Y. Detroit hosted its first women’s health fair and open house to increase its outreach and visibility in one of metro Detroit’s most-challenged neighborhoods while also celebrating the good work the clinic has done for the community for the past nine years.

The S.A.Y. Detroit Family Health Clinic, which is located at 211 Glendale Avenue, between Woodward and Hamilton, was established in 2008 by S.A.Y. Detroit founder Mitch Albom as the nation’s first free medical clinic for homeless and uninsured women and children. Operated by the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries, the clinic records more than 4,000 patient visits annually.

Area residents who attended the free event – which was run by 20 members of Albom’s A Time to Help volunteer team — were treated to a continental breakfast sponsored in part by Avalon International Breads and Forgotten Harvest. Henry Ford Health System provided free blood pressure and BMI testing, while SASHA Center had a booth set up to distribute information about its sexual assault services nonprofit.

In addition to those donations, S.A.Y. Detroit would also like to thank Dr. Joel Kahn’s GreenSpace Café in Ferndale for distributing free vegetables; My Community Dental Centers for its free giveaways; Smiggins the Clown for entertaining and painting children’s faces; Dr. Richard Keidan of Detroit2Nepal Foundation for his assistance in organizing the event, and the Cooper Standard Foundation for its longtime sponsorship of the clinic.

“Today was a fantastic meeting of our staff, our volunteers, some previous patients and a lot of potential new patients,” Albom said. “We were amazed at how many people still didn’t know about our little gem here, but we’re really pleased at how pleased they were once they found out what it was and I think this will spread the word about our clinic. We also spread the word about healthy eating, and we introduced a lot of people who had never met each other before to one another, which is the best thing you can do.”

Dr. Peggy Richardson, the S.A.Y. Clinic’s medical director, and Dr. Keyshia Covington took residents and guests on tours of the clinic. Chris Skellenger of  Buckets of Rain — an urban garden nonprofit — also informed visitors of its program, which provides homeless shelters with free produce and other food, and has one of its main gardens across the street from the clinic.

“We are trying so hard to let people know in the neighborhood and beyond what we are doing at the clinic,” Richardson said. “We have specialty care for our patients who do not have insurance. Everything that we have is free of charge for them.’’

Albom added: “We were blessed with great weather and this is exactly the kind of outreach that we want to do. We just don’t want to be inside our clinic, inside our doors, we want to be outside our doors telling our community that we can help them and we’re here for them — and we accomplished that today.”

Backyard Fun at Angels’ Place

Backyard Fun at Angels’ Place

Southfield — The project was special from the start.

More than a half-dozen residents from Angels’ Place — the nonprofit that A Time to Help supported Saturday in Southfield — welcomed the volunteers and stayed until the end, working alongside the group constructing games and painting banners.

For 25 years, Angels’ Place has provided residential homes, community living, support and day programs for persons with developmental disabilities. The nonprofit was founded by five mothers concerned about the quality of life for people with developmental disabilities and the needs of their families.

It was ATTH’s first project at Angels’ Place in two years.

“This is one of the most important projects I’ve done this year,” said longtime ATTH volunteer John Boyda. “We have the charity we’re working for, working with us.”

Led by S.A.Y. Detroit and ATTH founder Mitch Albom, and Albom’s radio show co-host Ken Brown, the group worked in the backyard of one of Angels’ Place’s residential homes. It was ATTH’s last project of the summer before resuming in September. The date and location of the next project will be announced in mid-August.

“I really admire the way that he uses his voice to find the people to go to where the most help is needed,” Angels’ Place volunteer coordinator Dawn Bradley said of Albom. “Seeking out need is really what he does, and figuring out how to get it done. We appreciate all the you did for us today.”

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