Let the Spirit of Volunteerism Rise in Metro Detroit!

21 02 2012

On Wednesday, February 22, I have the distinct pleasure of joining Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh and WDET’s Craig Fahle for “an unprecedented evening on Wayne State’s Campus.”  As the announcement

You can join together with leaders who share your passion and dedication for a healthy, stable Detroit.

The night will be historic. It is the kick off of a one month sprint to unlock 10,000 new volunteer hours in Detroit.

You will meet new people, get new tools and find new ways to make a difference.

But how can you have such a great opportunity without having to endure some data before you start?  Well, that is where yours truly comes in.  I have been asked to be one of the kickoff speakers and fill you with some numbers, some things to think about, and, hopefully, a little more motivation to be a  change agent in Detroit.

While I am not going to give away everything that I plan to cover, I would like to throw out some stats related to Volunteering in the Detroit metropolitan area.  Since everyone loves rankings, I thought I would give you some idea where Detroit ranks among the Top 51 metros (population based) in the country.  This ranking is based on age of the volunteers.

Older Adults (Before 1946)            37th

Baby Boomers (1946-1964)           33rd

Gen X (1964-1982)                      26th

Millenials (1982-2000)                 38th

Young Adult (1984-1996)              33rd

Overall                                       32nd

It is obvious that we, as a region, have a long way to go before we can hit the Top 10 on any category.  It is clear that the factors that tend to lower volunteering:  Foreclosure rate; poverty rate; unemployment rate; and homeownership, all traveled in the wrong direction over the last 5 years.  In addition, the Detroit region ranks quite low in the percentage of college graduates – another indicator tied to volunteerism.

While we may not be able to reverse all the factors overnight, we are beginning to see positive signs.  The important point is that these factors do not doom us to a ranking in the bottom half of the list.  The ability to rise in the rankings is in our hands!  Let us use this event as the beginning of our climb to the TOP!

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4 responses

22 02 2012
Robert Brincheck

Which metro region designation did you use? Detroit’s metro region only includes Wayne county, Warren, & Dearborn and does not include Oakland County. The expanded region actually includes what most people would acknowledge as “Metro Detroit”; Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, and also Washtenaw. With tens of thousands of engineers, college grads all, employed in the region along with all the other professionals and the numerous universities I find it difficult to believe we rank near the bottom. However, w/o Oakland, Macomb, & Washtenaw it very easy to believe. Please check the numbers, accuracy is important.

22 02 2012
dataguru1

The study uses the Detroit metropolitan are as currently defined – 6 counties including Macomb, Oakland, Wayne, Livingston, Lapeer and St. Clair. Washtenaw County is in the Ann Arbor metropolitan area. The Wayne County only is the metropolitan division of the metro area.

23 02 2012
Fuzzytek

Missed the opportunity to attend – hope it went well and YES volunteerism and citizen journalism is on the rise!

Mainstream media has limited scope it is able to cover, based primarily on funding for controlled content. There are many stories that are not being covered that need journalism.

25 02 2012
Calling Detroit to action | Information & News From Detroit Unspun

[...] noted that out of the 51 largest metropolitan areas in the United States, metropolitan Detroit ranks 32 in terms of number of volunteer hours.  Minneapolis, Portland and Rochester, NY are among the [...]

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