Brilliant Detroit, an organization dedicated to building kid success neighborhoods, is undergoing a growth spurt of sorts with the opening of its signature orange-colored doors at its newest community hub located in Detroit’s Fitzgerald neighborhood.
The hub provides an oasis to area residents, who have the opportunity to gain access to its many educational materials, activities and support geared toward families with children under 8 years of age.
The 2,000-square-foot home, located at 16919 Prairie St. in the Fitzgerald neighborhood, is Brilliant Detroit’s most extensive, according to published materials.
“This home, like all of our others, is built with, for and by the neighborhood,” says Cindy Eggleton, co-founder and CEO of Brilliant Detroit. “We are honored to have been invited into the Fitzgerald neighborhood where parents and families are helping to drive the change they need as a community and for themselves and their children.
“Sometimes families don’t have the tools, convenience and access that is needed. Brilliant Detroit is providing that, all in one location,” adds Eggleton.
The facility is the third Brilliant Detroit home to open this year. By year’s end, the organization will open another four, bringing the total number to 11 sites citywide.
Representatives from the Urban Land Institute and Live6, as well as Detroit District 2 Manager Kim Tandy and a representative from Councilman Ray McCalister Jr.’s office, joined Eggleton and other Brilliant Detroit staff and board members at the center’s open house and block party held earlier this month.
One of the event’s highlights was an introduction to Brilliant Detroit’s “Raising A Reader” program, which included a gift bag filled with books .
Young readers will get the opportunity to exchange the books for new ones weekly, according to event organizers who also work on literacy efforts with families.
The two-pronged approach focused on young readers and their parents is important, according to Eggleton.
“It is well documented that approximately 86 percent of Detroit’s third-graders are not reading at grade level,” says Eggleton. “These children will struggle academically and throughout their lives without intervention. We can and must do better for our children.”
In just under four years since the organization was established, Brilliant Detroit has served more than 4,000 people, and attracted the support of 85 partners and more than 1,300 volunteers.