From the desk of Executive Director, Ms. Debra Hayes, MBA
“The foundation has been laid: but the building is yet to come,” is what I promised in 2015. I cannot pretend and tell you that this journey has been an easy one, but I can say that it has definitely been worth it.
Over these past few years, I have witnessed many miracles. One that comes to mind is the story of Robert Giddings, a current member of the MBK support team. Before coming to MBK, Robert experienced blindness for nearly a decade with no hope of ever seeing again. Robert, had also lost all of his possessions after the death of his fiancé. In 2016, Robert was the recipient of a double lens transplant. Since the restoration of his sight, he still faces many health issues, however he manages to work around the building as a Trustee and also makes meals for the homeless men at MBK. Robert began putting his life back together by acquiring both a state I.D. and a copy of his birth certificate, to gain access to the resources of the community. Our miracle man’s next step is acquiring permanent supportive housing.
Thankfully, this story of success is one of many. During my time here, I have witnessed over 30 veterans go from homelessness to having keys to their new house. Whether rain, sunshine, sleet, or snow, day after day, I have seen countless people enter the lunchroom for community lunch. Furthermore, I had the pleasure of seeing sixty-six job seekers enroll in career edge (an employability readiness class taught by the Chambers of Commerce). It is with great pride that I announce, 39 of them completed the class and many of them remain employed today because of this opportunity.
In addition to helping our shelter clients, we have been able to assist in the communities’ effort in mitigating the levels of lead by collaborating with the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan in serving the community nutritious foods. Through our efforts, MBK issued 189,730 lbs. of food and 158,100 meals to the community in 2016. This initiative has helped us achieve our goal of “Strengthening individuals, families and community” one family at a time.
Overall, it has been a great experience. However, none of this would have been possible without our generous donors. It is because of your kindness that we have been able to help as many as we have. As such, MBK would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts and we pray for your continued support.