Thursday, March 13, 2008

Get to know Southwest Detroit

As Detroit's fastest-growing neighborhood, southwest Detroit is a colorful community that you should definitely make a point to visit if you haven't already.

You have the opportunity to do just that and learn about the community on Thursday, March 20, when Southwest Solutions (SWSOL) hosts the March edition of its 'Be a Part of the Solution' bus tour.

Running from 6-7:15 pm, the tour is your free chance to get to know southwest Detroit a little better, and to hear some of the great things SWSOL has done to improve the community. What can you expect on the tour? John Van Camp, president and CEO of SWSOL, will talk about the organization's mission and the transformation of southwest Detroit, and you will meet several southwest Detroiters, who will share their personal stories of triumph. You will also have the opportunity to view some of SWSOL's program sites.

After the tour, make sure to stick around the neighborhood and enjoy authentic fare from one of Mexicantown's amazing restaurants (there are several outstanding places -- to narrow your choices, ask SWSOL staff members for their recommendations).

Having attended a similar SWSOL tour back in September, I can attest that this brief program is a few hours very well spent. The organization is doing amazing things in southwest Detroit -- it has been for over 30 years -- and John Van Camp is one of the most passionate people I have ever met. (He was so motivating that, after hearing him speak on the bus, I wondered if I should pay him for inspiring me so much!)

You don't have to be a Detroit resident to attend, either; if you have a desire to visit southwest Detroit and learn how it is becoming a stronger, healthier community, you're encouraged to particpate in the tour.

Sound like something you'd be interested in? RSVP to Bob O'Brien, Vice President of Development for SWSOL, at (313) 849-4902, extension 1, or by email. You must sign up for the bus tour by March 18 to attend.

More about SWSOL
Incorporated in 1972, SWSOL is a non-profit organization that seeks to improve southwest Detroit through a variety of services including mental health, family literacy and housing and economic development. In the past decade, SWSOL has invested more than $10 milion in the community. Its foreclosure and home counseling program has also earned it local and national recognition. And, in 2005, SWSOL garnered the Best Managed Non-Profit award by Crain's Detroit Business. For more information, please visit SWSOL on the Web.

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