UM-Dearborn faculty research focuses on renovating homes, spirits

This summer, faculty at UM-Dearborn spent time with residents of Detroit’s Osborne neighborhood. They created and taught a Writers Club for youth at the Matrix Human Services Center and took part in the non-profit organization Life Remodeled’s community project, which focuses on a Detroit neighborhood each summer to renovate a school, restore select homes, and remove blight and overgrowth.

The educators worked with the teens on expressing their hopes and dreams for themselves and their neighborhood at the weekly Writers Club.

“At the Writers Club, we said you can sit there and watch, or you could be a part of the change that’s going to happen. It doesn’t end here. It was important for them to think about sustainability,” said Dara Hill, associate professor of reading and language arts. “For the youth who participated, they shared how it was empowering to see brush cleared away or have nice green space in an area that once had grass taller than they are.”

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