Brand new housing opportunity in Muskegon Heights.

525 West Summit Avenue, Muskegon 49444

525 West Summit Avenue, Muskegon 49444

The former Roosevelt school has been newly renovated into new, high-quality one and two bedroom apartment homes. The community boasts large, beautifully lit, spacious living and common areas, with touches of the buildings school-roots running throughout. Restoration offers a community garden, playground, and large living and community spaces with tons of natural light.

Applications can be picked up at Community enCompass' office. Applications can be picked at the reception window during the following hours:

Monday 9AM to 1PM
Tuesday 9AM to 1PM
Wednesday 9AM to 1PM

Your application CANNOT be returned if you do not have ALL of the following items:

  • Homeless verification.
  • Identification card.
  • Social Security cards fro ALL household members.
  • Birth certificates for ALL household member.
  • Proof of income.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to come to the office and speak with our receptionist.

Meet our Summer Associates!

"This summer, Community enCompass is privileged to host 6 VISTA Summer Associates, and we would like to introduce you to our team:

From left to right: Will, Shantel, Chris, Arisha (Vista Leader) Danielle, and Nathan, (Fluarry not pictured) 

From left to right: Will, Shantel, Chris, Arisha (Vista Leader) Danielle, and Nathan, (Fluarry not pictured) 

Nathan Helm is serving as the McLaughlin Grows Farm Education Assistant coordinating healthy meals and educational programs for youth on the farm and youth participating in summer programming. Nathan is no stranger to the McLaughlin Farm and has been a great help to Laurie. He is currently finishing up his culinary studies at Baker’s Culinary Institute of Michigan

Will Paige is serving as the Lawn Care Assistant helping to train YEP's to develop lawn care and leadership skills while providing yard services in core city neighborhoods. Will is happy to share his skills and talents with the team. Will has been a long-time volunteer at Sacred Suds, and we’re excited to have him join us as a Summer Associate.

Danielle Warren is serving as the Growing Goods Assistant to provide support for youth in summer school and community settings including McLaughlin Grows Urban Farm.  Danielle is passionate about serving in the community.

Chris Longmire is serving as the Rehab Housing Assistant working alongside YEP's and volunteer groups to develop leadership skills and training. Last year, Chris shared his skills with Community enCompass as a Baker College Intern, and so is another returning member of the Community enCompass family.

Shantel Johnson is serving as the CATCH Camp Assistant leading 8 YEP counselors to ensure kids involved in CATCH Camp have a safe and fun summer experience. Shantel is a former YEP and will be going into her last year at Michigan State as she furthers her dream to become a scientist.

Fluarry Jackson is serving as the YEP Leadership Development Assistant coordinating the lunch program for the CATCH Camp summer experience participants, Lost Arts public art and Leadership Development with the YEP's. Fluarry has experience working with youth and is excited to connect with the YEP's.

These Summer Associates will serve in neighborhood development efforts while connecting with neighbors, volunteers and partners in the McLaughlin and Nelson neighborhoods. The Summer Associates will live and work alongside these community members to advance local solutions.

AmeriCorps VISTA Summer Associate members bring their passion and perseverance where the need is greatest which is in the community. We are happy to have them serving a 9-week term with the YEP, McLaughlin Grows, Growing Goods, CATCH Camp, Rehab and Lawn Care programs.

We are excited about the experience, growth, relationships and support this team will gain during their term of service and are confident their energy will contribute to each program's impact."

YEP at work!

June 18th, Father’s Day, will kick off the 9th year of CATCH Camp, the summer day camp in McLaughlin Neighborhood. Summer camp is about more than fun-packed weeks of adventure trips, kickball games, and character lessons.  It’s more than forming life-long friendships.  It’s more than strengthening character and self-esteem.  It’s all of this, to be sure.  But it’s about something more.

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Summer camp is also about building leadership.  It is the time when young people (our YEPs!) who have been maturing socially and spiritually over the past year(s) get the opportunity to exercise their leadership before younger watchful eyes.  Nothing builds one's confidence like having others follow your example and aspire to be like you.

One of the greatest joys in neighborhood development work is seeing young leaders growing up to take positions of influence and responsibility in the community.  This summer a growing number of our emerging leaders will be thrust into positions of significant responsibility that will further stretch their abilities and test their faith.  They will work as farmers and mentors with McLaughlin Grows Farm, as camp leaders with CATCH Camp, as crew leaders with Royal Edge (our new and improved lawn care social enterprise!), and with our Home Rehab and Construction program at our newest home redemption project.  By the summer's end, they will be exhausted.  And significantly matured.

We need your help.  We have the work for the kids.  We have the staff to train and supervise them.  What we need is the money to pay the kids for their work.  Our goal is to hire 30 kids throughout the summer, awarding them $650 upon completion of a summer of job training!

Can you help us reach our goal?  

 

 

"I am a leader"

Our YEPs just got back from Washington D.C. This was made possible due to the generosity of our neighbors who helped the YEP's raise the money needed to make this trip. The YEPs visited many D.C. attractions, including the newly opened National Museum of African American History & Culture, Georgetown University, and Howard University.

YEP Keyvon Carpenter reflects on what he learned on the trip:

"Although I’ve been in a big city such as Washington D.C., this trip still helped me to have a better outlook on the world. It allowed me to see what it was like to be in a state, where people’s lifestyle is different. It also helped me to better myself in regards to working with others, experiencing other lifestyles, and even maturity.

Georgetown University gave me life. The campus and the people are beautiful. The history behind it is amazing and the environment itself incredible. The fact that I’m going into my senior year, these college tours were one step closer to preparing me for the real world. Washington D.C, as well as Virginia, are gorgeous states. I’ve always said that I belong in the big cities and these two really made me feel like home. I love how it’s busy and everything is going at a fast pace; how people walk, ride their bikes, and taking the subway is so cool to me. This trip taught me many things in only four days. Both good and bad. Some bad things were the traffic and how rude some people were. But like Ms. Charlotte (YEP Director) said, “Focus on the positive.” That didn’t stop my joyness, not one bit.

Some good things were the attractions such as the Washington Monument, African American Museum, and even walking through the city. But most importantly, the people I came with. I love these people so much and I look at everyone as family. The love, the care, the laughter, the arguments, the happiness… I can go on and on, only shows how close we are. I am grateful for not only these people, not only YEP, but Ms. Charlotte, and the strong young man that she is helping my mom mold me into. I loved everything about this trip and it’s one of the many reasons why I never left.

I am a leader. I’m ambitious and I’m inspiring because of YEP. I will remain that way.

Thank you."

On behalf of Keyvon and all of the YEP's we would like to say THANK YOU to everyone who was involved in this trip, you have truly helped to make an impact on these young leaders lives.

   


    

 

McLaughlin Grows’ “Community Supported Agriculture“ (CSA) For All Ages

Buying a CSA from McLaughlin Grows, your neighborhood urban farm, goes much deeper than just eating the freshest food available. There is the most obvious aspect of CSA membership:

The farm’s produce is grown clean, using organic practices and no harmful chemicals. We fertilize with locally produced compost (much from our own compost bins) and treat for pests with either soapy water, natural oils, natural predators, or by hand picking pests. Weeds are pulled by hand or hoe. No pesticides, herbicides or growth enhancers will ever be used at McLaughlin Grows Urban Farm, so your family receives the safest produce available.

But there is so much more that you support by participating in McLaughlin Grows CSA program:

McLaughlin Grows employs local youth throughout the growing season. High-school students participating in the Youth Empowerment Project (YEP) have the option of working on the farm, learning leadership skills, cooperation, patience, and earning practical work experience. By working on the farm, these youth learn the very basics of self-sufficiency…how to grow their own food.

McLaughlin Grows employs college-aged students as interns. They not only hone existing skills, but learn management and organizational techniques too,  as they work with every aspect of farm operations.

The farm also helps middle school students in summer school who are in danger of not passing to the next grade level. Through “Growing Goods,” middle-schoolers learn about eating healthy, gain knowledge about growing their own food and build self-confidence and self-esteem. They also learn first-hand that they can make amazing things happen when working together as a team.

We are growing educational programs at McLaughlin Grows too! Preschoolers, elementary school-aged students, middle-schoolers, and high-schoolers come to the farm on field trips and for community service projects to learn about what it takes to put food on their tables. Programs are being developed so that teachers can find farm-based lessons in a variety of subjects such as math, history, language arts, art, and the sciences that help teach their classes about farming and growing food using these different venues. It is a wonderful way to bring students onto the farm and the farm into the classroom!

Special needs students come to the farm regularly to learn practical life skills, how to grow food, and to gain hands-on work experience through everyday activities. These young adults are given the opportunity to grow and stretch their abilities beyond what can be done inside the four walls of a classroom. We are also developing programs to bring senior citizens and youth together. Having multi-generational activities where those with experience guide their young neighbors through the steps of sowing seed, growing and caring for plants creates bridges of understanding and fosters a greater sense of responsibility for each other.

All of these things and more are what purchasing a CSA share through McLaughlin Grows Urban Farm supports. Neighbors coming together, children learning where food comes from, elders passing skills on to their littlest neighbors, people learning to eat and live healthier and happier, and so much more! We are one community…growing healthier, growing stronger, and growing together!

McLaughlin Grows Urban Farm is currently hiring interns. If you want to get involved in community farming check out the oportunities HERE

Stay up to date on all the farm activities on FACEBOOK

Project Sawubona (“I See You”) by Najeah Tornes

On March 17, 2017, the YEP’s (Youth Empowerment Project) hosted “Project Sawubona,” inspired by a Zulu word meaning, “I see you.”  As YEPs, we invited students from other Muskegon school districts to come out and support the community of Muskegon.

We had planned to clean up two areas of the Muskegon community, cleaning up garbage and tidying up public spaces, but due to the weather (there was a blizzard that morning!)  we had a change in plans. Instead, we helped Kids Food Basket program, a program where volunteers make sack lunches for the students of Nelson and the Heights elementary schools to send home with students from struggling families so they can have an evening meal. They put a cool twist on it with colors and designs on every bag, so each and every student can have something positive every day.

Thankfully, a lot of our peers came and supported us from all different schools and areas such as Oakridge, MCEC, Muskegon, Western Michigan Christian, Orchard View, Muskegon Covenant Academy and Muskegon Heights. First, we all had breakfast and designed the lunch bags and had positive bonding time with our peers. We also had an activity where we had a discussion about the positive and negative going on in our community and ways we could make it better.

After both of those activities, we went to Muskegon Heights High School and had a rally where outstanding talents and amazing acts of courage were shown. Keyvon (a YEP) danced boldly and amazingly, and Ms. Charlotte (YEP Director) sang gracefully.  Wonderful things happened that day, but the most courageous was this: three boys from Muskegon Heights High School came up on the stage in front of everyone and shared what their school and city meant to them. Then, they asked for help from us, to get other people to see the Heights the way they do.

This was my first community project with YEP,  and I was inspired by all of my peers. It was refreshing to know that other people felt the same or had similar feelings and thoughts as me regarding my community. After this experience, for the first time in my life, I believed that we can actually change the community we live in and maybe even the world.

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Najeah Tornes is a member of our Youth Empowerment Program, which provides neighborhood youth with leadership skills, volunteer experience, and college/work readiness.

Keep up to date on all the amazing things the YEP's do on FACEBOOK

Community enCompass is hiring a Lawn Care Crew Supervisor

We are currently looking for a temporary Lawn Care Crew Supervisor to join our team over the summer months.

This position is responsible for directing 5 core-city youth crew members in daily operations of lawn and landscape maintenance including quality control, training, punctuality, and safety.  Candidates must also have strong organization skills, ability to complete appropriate paperwork, and possess good leadership and communication skills.  The employee will provide quality service that meets or exceeds our customers’ and management’s expectations.  The employee will show attention to detail and effectively communicate with subordinates, peers and his/her supervisor.  All employees will possess a friendly, customer service minded attitude and will conduct themselves in a professional manner.

For more details on this paid position, please click the link HERE. Please apply with a resume and cover letter to sarah@communityencompass.org

Job listing will end on April 30th, 2017.

 

Out goes the old, in goes the new

Thanks to the generosity of the Muskegon Community, Sacred Suds is able to celebrate the practical impact of neighbors helping neighbors with the installation of eight new dryers and three new washing machines at Sacred Suds.

Out goes the old...

Out goes the old...

In order to give a practical demonstration of the power of your gifts consider a simple comparison of the cost of laundry at Sacred Suds vs. the cost of laundry at a community laundromat.

Six loads of laundry for an average family of 4 at a local laundromat, including the cost of soap and other laundry incidents would equal $21.00 per visit. That is $3.50 per load or $1,092.00 annually.

The same 6 loads of laundry washed at Sacred Suds, with our new state-of-the-art high-efficiency machines, and the provision of soap and other laundry essentials provided for free, costs $12.00 per visit. That is $2.00 per load, $624.00 annually, and provides each family a yearly savings of $468.00.

In 2016, while operating at 75% of our capacity due to failing machines, 3,002 loads of laundry were done at Sacred Suds. An average of 250 loads per month. At 6 loads of laundry per family, we assisted at least 42 families each month, providing monthly savings in our community of $19,656 or $235,872 annually.

Your gifts have increased our capacity to 100%, as we move into 2017 and beyond.  Sacred Suds is now able to serve a minimum of 53 families monthly, generating monthly savings of $24,804 or $297,648 annually. In addition, we have a quieter environment, happier neighbors, dependable facilities, and we are already seeing increased usage.

...in goes the new!

...in goes the new!

This would not be possible without the generous support of the individuals and organizations who have provided support for our new washers and dryers, generous on-going gifts of laundry supplies, and enthusiasm for the work we do. Our neighbors would have a much more difficult time addressing this basic need and making use of the limited resources they have.

We are a privileged community, creating a sacred space within our city, with our laundry facilities operating as one of our essential community hubs.  

And we have been equipped by our individual donors who gave generously to support this initiative of Community enCompass; community partners such as Great Lakes Dental, Men Who Care, Mercy Health, The Greater Muskegon Service League, The Muskegon Chamber of Commerce Women’s Division, and many others who have given to this initiative and/or to our ongoing laundry needs by providing soap and other laundry supplies. You have given us the tools to help neighbors in need! Thank you!

We look forward in the upcoming weeks to providing you an opportunity to see the wonderful things that you have helped accomplish. Be watching for an opportunity to tour the updated facilities at Sacred Suds, and hear about the exciting things we have planned as we move forward. You are truly helping us rebuild community among those who have at times felt abandoned by community!

Click here for more pictures of our new machines!