OU-Pontiac Initiative

OU-Pontiac Initiative’s Community Sponsorship Awards help community programs flourish

icon of a calendarFebruary 29, 2024

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OU-Pontiac Initiative’s Community Sponsorship Awards help community programs flourish
OU-Pontiac Initiative Leadership Team
The OU-Pontiac Initiative Leadership Team

Through the OU-Pontiac Initiative, the City of Pontiac, Trinity Health Oakland, and Oakland University collaborated to provide $75,000 in Community Impact Sponsorship Awards to various applicants requesting support for projects that will make a positive impact in the Pontiac Community.

“The OU-Pontiac Initiative’s Community Impact Sponsorship Awards is a great reminder that amazing programs can flourish with a little bit of support,” said Teresa Rodges, senior director for Community Service and Pre-College Programs at Oakland University. “We are really excited about the opportunity to enrich our partnerships with 15 organizations and look forward to working together to improve the lives of Pontiac residents.

This year’s Community Impact Sponsorship Award recipients include:

• The Art Experience ($5,000) – Looking to expand the Art Fish Fun Festival (2024), including growing the Artist Market.

• Oakland County (MI) Chapter, The Links Inc. ($5,000) – Focuses on art initiative and art education, including exposing Pontiac School students to STEAM.

• Clarence E. Phillips Ascend Foundation ($5,000) – Provide job training related to successful employment seeking, maintaining employment, and seeking opportunities for career advancements. Available for students and adults who desire training to assist with securing employment.

• OU School of Health Sciences: Summer Camps ($5,000) – Assist local high school and middle school students with payments for summer learning opportunities related to health sciences.

• Identify Your Dream ($5,000) – Purpose is to enhance and expand the Identify Your Dreams program in the Pontiac area. The IDYD focuses on assisting children in low-income communities who are grieving from loss by contributing to emergency shelter, food assistance, etc.

• Habitat for Humanity of Oakland County ($5,000) – Assisting low-to-moderate-income homeowners by completing minor exterior repairs with help from volunteers.

• Irma Hayes Productions, LLC ($5,000) – Create a series of engaging and inclusive festivals (The Oakland County Roots & Rhythm, Pontiac Edition) to highlight the cultural heritage of Oakland County.

• Pontiac Collective Partnership: OU-SEHS Initiative for Eradicating Racism ($5,000) – Continue work that the Pontiac Collective Partnership started in 2022 through a series of anti-racism workshops, lectures, classes and professional development seminars.

• Pontiac Transportation Museum ($5,000) – Create a permanent display at the Pontiac Transportation Museum about wheeled vehicle history in the Pontiac area.

• Oakland County Michigan Works! ($5,000) – Provide Pontiac Youth with an eight-week paid work experience at businesses, non-profits or other work locations in the Pontiac area.

• Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine: Dermatology Interest Group ($5,000) – Distribute skincare kits to the homeless population within Pontiac.

• Oakland County Sheriff PAL ($5,000) – Pairing girls in Pontiac with collegiate athletes to encourage increased physical activity.

• D House of Angels ($5,000) – Promote holistic well-being to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Focuses on mental, emotional and physical wellness.

• Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan: La Casa Amiga ($5,000) – Increase awareness about depression during and after pregnancy, healthy pregnancy habits, breastfeeding and newborn care with expectant mothers, and mothers with babies within the Hispanic community in Pontiac.

• E-Community Outreach Services ($5,000) – Creating a community “store” in which local residents can pick up household necessities. Having a solid inventory can help alleviate the financial pressures these families face.

“Trinity is committed to improving the overall health of the community; this commitment includes addressing social and financial barriers to care,” said David Bowman, director of Community Health and Wellbeing for Trinity Health St. Joseph Mercy Oakland. “The OU-Pontiac Initiative Community Impact Sponsorships provide vital funding for Pontiac nonprofits to continue their work. We are proud to partner with Oakland University and the City of Pontiac on this community benefit program.”

Pontiac Mayor Tim Greimel agreed.

“Pontiac non-profits are the backbone of our community,” Greimel said. “This financial assistance will ensure that additional programs and opportunities are provided to city residents.”

The Community Impact Sponsorship applicants selected for funding support the ongoing sustainability of projects related to one or more of the OU-Pontiac Initiative’s six core pillar areas: Arts and Culture, Birth to Grade 16 Education, Building Capacity for Non-Profits and Neighborhoods, Civic Engagement, Economic and Workforce Development, and Healthcare and Wellness.

“These organizations are committed to the work of the OU-Pontiac Initiative’s mission to advance the vitality of the Pontiac community while enhancing experiential learning opportunities for Oakland University students,” Rodges said.

For more information, visit www.oakland.edu/community/pontiac-initiative.

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