Our great friends at K-Love Radio did this write up on the K-Love Hope Center in Detroit. To read this story and many others, check out their website at impact.klove.com. Written by Karen Stewartson Gallivan.
Detroit is the most populated city in Michigan and home to nearly 700,000 residents. The city has gained a reputation for high crime rates and, with the collapse of the car industry, extreme poverty. On top of that, Detroit has a high infant mortality rate and one of the nation’s highest unemployment rate. The outlook for the Motor City was gloomy, and it got worse with the city filing for bankruptcy and a mass exodus of residents migrating, leaving hundreds of abandoned properties. But for those remaining in a desolate Detroit, signs of social prosperity and hope would emerge.
In 2014, K-LOVE partnered with World Hope — a charity organization whose mission is to give hope and the love of Christ to the hopeless — to open the K-LOVE Hope Center at the former Packard Automotive Plant Showroom. Hope Center provides a safe environment where Detroit families can get food, clothing, and educational and technology resources — all while getting to know God. During the first year of operation, Hope Center welcomed more than 250 first-time visitors. Hope Center is attributed with bringing 43 lives to Christ, distributing 5,000 articles of clothing, and serving 1,000 meals to the hungry, as well as giving more than $2,500 in food cards to the needy. In addition, the center is a hub for unity and community, bringing more than 500 children and adults to support outreach events.
But prior to all of these successes and signs of hope, the facility underwent a huge renovation. And much like the building’s transformation, the community is changing and pouring into one another and Hope Center. Volunteers from the community and K-LOVE listeners from the US, England, Jamaica, and Korea gave 4,708 hours from painting walls, hanging drapery, installing carpet to replacing light fixtures and cleaning the building.
In a city where three out of four children drop out of school, Hope Center also is attempting to help with education retention through its core ministry program Refuge, which offers homework support and tutoring five days a week. Refuge is home to food, fellowship, fun, recreational activities, worship, and thought-provoking Bible study. But the students don’t just sit back: They built the Refuge game room and are transported by the Refuge 15-passenger vehicle to and from locations and community revival projects. Students can also hit the basketball court to stay active. Since its launch, Refuge has gained two full-time volunteers.
“We hope for better things; it shall rise from the ashes.”
The work continues at the K-LOVE Hope Center. In October, the Literacy Center was opened to encourage literacy efforts. In addition to the church, daycare and after-school initiatives, future plans include offering pertinent new services like a recovery program, medical clinic, and being a business incubator space, which will hopefully bring about positive economic changes. For now, the city’s motto: “We hope for better things; it shall rise from the ashes,” is becoming a reality, thanks to the outpouring of God’s love that is manifesting through K-LOVE and World Hope.