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Davontae Sanford

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Many of you may have seen the TV coverage of the young black Detroiter Davontae Sanford who spent 10 years in prison for a crime he never committed. In June Davontae was set free and able to return to his family (having been in solitary confinement since 2007.)

Last week Davontae joined us at the Meldrum Kitchen to thank so many of the folks who supported him.

New Beginnings

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After having the wonderful opportunity to do formation work with novices from eight Capuchin provinces across North America, Guam, and Australia for the last five years, I’m beginning a new and exciting assignment with the Capuchin Soup Kitchen. For the next several months of orientation, I’ll be working at the different soup kitchen sites in order to see how the whole system works. More importantly, however, I’ll have the chance to meet the great people that are the heart of the ministry. I’m very blessed and grateful to be a part of the community here.

Providing our Young People an Opportunity to Serve

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Volunteers are part of the lifeblood of the Services Building.  Those that come in to volunteer help provide needed hands that help us to serve those who are in need.  Without this valuable resource it would be tough for the Services Building to maintain the level of excellence that we strive to achieve each day. Thus, we are so thankful for our volunteers and our young people who choose to work at the Services Building as part of the youth summer jobs program.

This year, Big Brothers and Big Sisters who are a part of the Grow Detroit Young Talent or GDYT, an initiative that provides summer jobs to the city’s youth, approached us to bring on board some of their youth for job placement.  The youth are paid by GDYT, but work at selected sites around the city.  We were approached by several organizations to be a site for youth to work at.  Three organizations that approached us were Big Brothers and Big Sisters, City Connect and the Detroit Police Cadets program.  The three organizations sent us a total of thirteen youth.

Recovery Works

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This weekend I had the opportunity to talk with a former resident of Jefferson House. He was at the house covering a shift for a staff member who was on vacation. We caught up a bit and talked about people we knew and how they are doing. Then he shared about himself. He let me know that some people are surprised he is still sober and want to know how he does it, but he tells them there was no “magic” to his recovery—it has taken hard work, a willingness to do the work and a decision to never use, “no matter what.”