Ford Announces Detroit Resource and Engagement Center Expansion
Ford Motor Company Fund announced on Monday morning that it will be investing $5 million in Detroit by expanding a community center concept into a second location.
A second Ford Resource and Engagement Center will be created at the Fisher Magnet Upper Academy on the east side of Detroit in cooperation with both Detroit Public Schools Foundation and Detroit Public Schools. Detroit Public Schools Foundation will manage the center when it opens next year.
“While our region is making great strides, we need to do more for Detroit’s neighborhoods,” said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund. “Locating the new resource center at Fisher Upper provides us an opportunity to reach another Detroit neighborhood with programs that benefit students and families alike.”
“The opening of the new Ford Resource and Engagement Center location within Fisher Upper is a tangible example of the power of school and community partnerships that can create the wrap around supports that will provide additional enrichment opportunities for our students,” said Alycia Meriweather, interim superintendent, Detroit Public Schools Community District. “Closing the opportunity gap is one of the first steps in closing our achievement gaps, and I commend Ford for setting such a great example. DPSCD is extremely thankful for this investment in our children and our community.”
The center will complement the original Ford Resource and Engagement Center, which was established in Mexicantown Mercado in southwest Detroit more than three years ago. In the time since its launch, the center has provided services for more than 80,000 Detroit residents, up to and including feeding those in need and helping with the completion of tax returns. Ford estimates that the center has returned $3 in services to the community for every dollar invested in it.
Ford and Ford Fund intend to contribute as much as $20 million to various organizations and causes within Detroit and southeast Michigan this year, an estimated 70% increase from its investments in 2011.