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MLK Day Project Helps the Homeless


Grants help local church give back

Members of New Vision Cathedral of Praise in Chesterfield Township recently helped the homeless as part of a Martin Luther King Jr. Day service project.

The church, which operates out of Carkenord Elementary School on 24 Mile Road, received grants to fund the project from the Michigan Community Service Commission and the Michigan Nonprofit Association. On Jan. 14, church members and leaders partnered with Gumbo’s Louisiana restaurant and bakery in Mount Clemens to address the issue of homelessness. The restaurant donated its kitchen and space for the event.

Volunteers from several Macomb County communities, including Chesterfield Township and New Baltimore, prepared and served hot meals to the homeless.


“We would like to say a special thank you to Gumbo’s restaurant,” church leaders said on Facebook. “We would also like to thank those who organized and executed this for us. Thank you to all the volunteers who sacrificed your time and effort.”

Volunteers included Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., Eta Lambda Zeta Chapter, of Mount Clemens, area clergy members, the New Vision Cathedral of Praise congregation and representatives from the offices of the mayor and police departments, church leaders said in a news release.

Attending clergy members, led by Pastor George Young, who serves as chaplain of Chesterfield Township Police Department and the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, also offered life skill counseling to those who needed it.

New Vision Cathedral of Praise Director of Community Affairs Y. Michelle Wilson-Merriweather provided local service organizational information to attendees.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day was established in 1983 when legislation was signed to create a federal holiday marking the civil rights leader’s birthday. In 1994, Congress designated the federal holiday as a national day of service and charged the Corporation for National and Community Service with leading the effort.


The Michigan Community Service Commission and the Michigan Nonprofit Association engaged 3,000 volunteers in nearly 10,000 volunteer hours for this year’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the release states. Volunteers tutored and mentored children, painted schools and senior centers, delivered meals and built homes.

“We want to support Michigan residents in serving in the spirit of Martin Luther King,” said Ginna Holmes, executive director of the Michigan Community Service Commission. “We encourage everyone to join together in this national day of service and volunteer to make a difference in their community.”