WRITER | LISA BECKER CAMPBELL
PHOTO | FOCUSHOPE.EDU
Unlike most mundane annual reports, Focus: HOPE’s 2021 Data Report brims with exciting accomplishments, positive numbers, and optimistic news concerning this vibrant nonprofit association. This is due in part to the fact that Focus: HOPE itself is also rare. It is one of a select few top-tier managed accounts participating in Microsoft’s Nonprofit Tech Acceleration for Black and African American Communities program.
The Tech Acceleration for Black and African American Communities program matches organizations with the technical software, services, consulting resources, software grants, and discounts that will help increase the impact of a nonprofit’s mission. To be eligible, the organizations must:
• Support the Black and/or African American community,
• Be committed to benefit the broader community, and
• Abide by Microsoft’s antidiscrimination policy.
With the support of Microsoft and other generous partners, Focus: HOPE in Southeast Michigan is undergoing a campus-wide digital transformation in order to weave a stronger and more responsive safety net for working families seeking resources.
“Our digital transformation efforts focus upon expanding intake efficiencies, data collection and sharing, and point-of-service technologies that will swiftly identify opportunities for families to increase earning potential and income stability,” stated Stephanie Maurice, Director of Annual Giving & Marketing.
Information Technology and Programming courses are offered through their impressive and in-depth Job Development programming. Training opportunities beyond IT skills include a partnership with DTE’s Tree Trim Academy; pre-apprenticeships in advanced manufacturing skills; preparation for logistics and transportation careers; and training in manufacturing skills including blueprint reading, shop math, welding, industrial robotics, and machining.
Field trips and programs such as photography are also offered for youth development outside of school time, and the program reached over 200 early-learning students in three age groups last year. Focus: HOPE is also home to Peer-to-Peer Doula and Breastfeeding Services, and its Food for Seniors provides food boxes throughout the region.
Beyond delivering day-to-day services and programs, the nonprofit is immersed in advocacy, equity, and community empowerment. They present the relevant “HOPE Speaks” podcast and the Generation of Promise (GoP) social justice and youth leadership program that supports future generations.
Focus: HOPE began its work in 1968, with an initial mission statement that pledged to “Recognize the dignity and beauty of every person … from Detroit and its suburbs of every economic status, national origin, and religious persuasion …”
Today, members and staff are still passionate and determined to continue “using intelligent and practical action to overcome racism, poverty, and injustice,” as per the original mission statement. Society has come a long way, but striving to achieve this mission today may be as important as it was in 1968.
To volunteer, visit FocusHope.GalaxyDigital.com
1400 Oakman Blvd.
Detroit, MI 48238