Illana was what first came to mind but then a remembered that a whole month of non-blogging happened before she was born and my chronological brain had to go back to the other place and people that have my heart.
For 5 days in November I travelled to inner-city Detroit to love on the kids from the projects that I've had the privilege to know over the last 2 years.
Well the connection came through a local Reverend who ministered to the children living in the Jefferies projects in Cass Corridor Detroit.
If you don't know about the Jefferies here's the summary:
public housing in a racial torn city,
crime grew to be high,
drug dealing huge and certainly not a safe place to visit let alone live.
When it caught on fire one night the major said "let it burn".
Eventually the Jefferies were torn down and the families dispersed to other housing projects in the area. When we visit I am one of the drivers and we frequent the Brewsters, Woodbridge and the Diggs projects.
These children live in a city with no grocery store in it's city limits, where food stamps are spend mostly in convenient stores, they know few people, if any, with a high school diploma and many dream of one day having a job, not college, not a house, not a car but a job.
So why Detroit?
Plus who can resist faces like this:
And football with these guys is super fun!
But they all live in the shadow of a city that was once great. Sure the picture below is like any city city- shiny and full of life.
The old Cass Tech high school, empty.
Hotel Eddy Stone and Harbor Lights Buildings- deserted.
Most of the buildings are amazing in architecture and with the hope of a comeback in the city they have been "cemented in" to preserve the structure and save it from squatters.
I'd love to live in this building of course with windows and some sprucing up!
And what in the world do we do there.
It's a two-fold mission. The first being the homeless and the second the children.
We love them.
Not that their parents don't, but in many cases, they don't.
This day we played in the leaves.
My dear friend Lisa.
When we met last summer she became my Detroit friend and I her Florida friend. We gave each other nicknames and we laughed a lot!
Lisa is super smart. She tested into the best High School in Michigan, Cass Tech but recently had to move and ow doesn't have a ride so she is back in regular public school. I have the mind to move there so I get her smarty pants to Cass Tech. When I stop at Lisa's new house to pick her and her 4 siblings up-15 children come out to pile into my 7 passenger van and go to Big A. 15. From one house.