Tuesday, July 26, 2016

2,500 GM employees to help Detroit's neighborhoods

teamGM Cares - File photo
It’ll be all hands (and arms and legs) on deck when 2,500 General Motors employees return to Detroit’s Cody Rouge community, which includes much of Warrendale. They will volunteer the week of August 15. Employees will donate their time and talent to board up vacant homes, clean empty lots, spruce up streets, and tackle other neighborhood and school improvements.

The transformation is part of teamGM Cares, a company-wide volunteerism initiative that is partnering with the Cody Rouge Community Action Alliance (CRCAA), Cody High School and additional corporations. Several of GM’s senior executives will join employees throughout the week.

The CRCAA and residents have been working with GM and The Skillman Foundation since early 2016 to determine the community’s needs and develop plans. “Our organization has been working for 10 years to create a strong, sustainable community for residents and businesses,” says Kenyetta Campbell, CRCAA executive director. “We are excited to partner with GM to help amplify our work.”

GM’s improvements to Cody High will include a concession stand, fitness park, dugout, soccer field, pavilion and a complete field cleaning.

“GM’s employees made great progress two years ago and now we are returning to work with residents and community leaders to create a safer, sustainable neighborhood where families and businesses can thrive,” added Heidi Magyar, director of GM Community Outreach.

Other partners working with GM in Cody Rouge include Quicken Loans, DTE Energy, The Skillman Foundation, PwC, Roncelli, Inc., and Oak Pointe Church. Their projects will include:

  • Employee volunteers from Quicken Loans will clean and paint boarded-up vacant structures and renovate the walking path at Rouge Park;
  • DTE Care Force employee volunteers to support board-up efforts by clearing trees, assessing utilities and service reliability and by planting new trees in the neighborhood;
  • The Skillman Foundation will provide logistical support to all employee volunteers;
  • PwC will do cleaning and painting at Cody High School;
  • Roncelli, Inc. will provide project management oversight; and
  • Oak Pointe Church will provide onsite support at Cody High School.


The week of sweat equity concludes with an Employee and Community Family Fun Day on August 20, where residents and employee volunteers will relax over food and music. GM employees will distribute backpacks filled with school supplies to neighborhood students at the Fun Day. GM employees stuffed 5,000 backpacks at Cobo Center in June alongside attendees at Points of Light, the world’s largest volunteering and service conference.

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