It’s been said home is where the heart is. For Mercedes-Benz Financial Services (MBFS) that’s metro Detroit and it’s putting its heart into helping the community.
More than 600 volunteers from MBFS spent time making a difference in metro Detroit as part of the company’s fifth annual Week of Caring. During the week of June 19 they worked with underserved students and families, painted several murals in Detroit, planted and harvested gardens, prepared food for those in need, cleaned up animal shelter grounds and helped build a home for deserving families.
They volunteered at the community project of their choice with one of the following metro-Detroit nonprofit organizations:
- Neighborhood Service Organization in Detroit
Volunteers brought to life several murals on each residential floor of the Bell building, which were designed collaboratively by the residents and a team of volunteer artists. Residents worked side by side with volunteers on this project.
- Michigan Urban Farming Initiative in Detroit
Volunteers rolled up their sleeves and assisted with farming tasks at this urban garden, including clean-up, weeding, mulching, in Detroit’s North End community.
- Ruth Ellis Center in Detroit
Volunteers spent two days building and beautifying the lot around Ruth’s House and the Ruth Ellis Center, including building/planting a food garden, as well as building/installing a tool shed, picnic tables, benches and raised flower beds.
- 8 Mile Boulevard Association in Ferndale
Volunteers brought life to a custom-designed mural, designed and stenciled by local artist, Ndubisi Okoye. This is the first in 8MBA’s brand new “Art on 8” art installation series, which will ultimately encompass 13 art installations – one in each community along the 8 Mile corridor.
- Detroit Animal Rescue Group (DAWG) in Romeo
Volunteers worked in teams to clear areas from debris on this Macomb County farm, as well as prepared areas for new animal enclosures.
- Beyond Basics in Southfield
Volunteers helped Thirkell Elementary School prepare for the school year by sorting and organizing books as well as assisted with lesson plan materials for Beyond Basics International Art & Writing program.
- Community Living Centers in Farmington
Enhancements were made to one of CLC’s group homes to improve the conditions for its residents, including painting, landscaping and installing cabinetry.
- Forgotten Harvest in Oak Park
Volunteers worked on Forgotten Harvest’s 103-acre farm and in its warehouse to help produce food for emergency food providers in metro Detroit.
- Humble Design in Pontiac
Volunteers teamed up with Humble Design to furnish and decorate homes for families transitioning out of homelessness.
- Macomb County Habitat for Humanity in Mount Clemens
Volunteers offered their helping hands at two Habitat projects, new-construction homes for Macomb County families in need.
“Social responsibility is one of our core values and a foundational tenet of our business that engages our employees year after year,” says Peter Zieringer, president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services. “The Week of Caring is just one of many initiatives in Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ year-round mission to be a positive force in the community.”
Volunteers from the company’s headquarters, located in Farmington Hills as well as in Atlanta, Georgia, Fort Mill, South Carolina and Mississauga, Canada, take part in Week of Caring activities. In total, more than 1,400 volunteers dedicated more than 9,000 hours of volunteer service, benefitting 25 different nonprofit organizations. Since its inception in 2013, more than 80 volunteer projects, spanning nearly 44,000 hours of service, have been completed during Week of Caring.