The Charitable Side of TEDxDetroit

This was my second year attending TEDxDetroit. Last year, I sat in the Fox and took in all of the inspiration, perspective and glory that the presenters had to offer. This year, I attended as a volunteer – specifically the TEDxDetroit charitable giving volunteer. While I loved the presentations from the first year what blew me away this year was all of you.

I spoke with hundreds of attendees and presenters, and listened to your stories as you told me how you were personally impacted by the charities we sponsored. To each of you who donated or took a moment to express gratitude – thank you for giving me my best TEDxDetroit experience.

I had many people ask for more details on the charities represented on the day of TEDxDetroit, so here they are!

Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program
The Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides historically underrepresented youth with innovative educational programming in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine. This year, Paulette Auchtung wowed the crowd with cool experiments from the Michigan Science Center’s STEMinista Project.

Downtown Boxing Gym Youth Program
The Downtown Boxing Gym Youth Program (DBG) develops good citizenship in urban youth through strong academic support, a demanding boxing program, and a connection to the community through voluntary service. DBG founder Carlo “Coach Khali” Sweeney delivered an impassioned talk about helping Detroit students at TEDxDetroit 2012.

The Avalon Village
The Avalon Village is a sustainable eco-village being built in Highland Park, MI (inside the city of Detroit). They are transforming one of the city’s most blighted blocks into a safe, functional, and beautiful space for the entire community. Avalon’s founder Shamayim “Mama Shu” Harris lit up the stage at TEDx this year with her story.

It was great to see my “partner in charity”, whose daughter participated in the Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program, and meet many people who were deeply moved by Mama Shu’s talk at TEDxDetroit. Although the experience of sitting in the audience and drinking in TEDxDetroit is really great – volunteering and raising a hand to help was even better. Until next year!

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