Banking on Our Future Empowers Students in Detroit with Financial Dignity


R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

That’s how 800 students attending public and charter schools in Detroit now define Dignity.

Throughout the month of October, Operation HOPE Detroit hosted a series of events focused on amplifying the message of Global Dignity in anticipation of Global Dignity Day on October 20.

Global Dignity Month in the Midwest was kicked off by Rachael Kottlowski, a Financial Service Representative at Flagstar Bank in Indiana who taught Dignity sessions to 75 students participating in the Youth in High Def Program at George Washington School in Indianapolis, IN.

Meanwhile, I myself, led lively discussions about the correlation between dignity and self-esteem with 10th grade students attending Chandler Park Academy High School, a charter school in Harper.

HOPE Corps Members and Volunteers from the University of Detroit Mercy, Primerica and Talmer Bank and Trust teamed up to teach Global Dignity Day sessions to 16 classes of students (575 in total) at Spain ES-MS. Students were introduced to the 5 Dignity Principles and encouraged to identify people in the community who live dignified lives.

GDD month in Detroit came to a close with a special program hosted by ten volunteer mentors with the Midnight Golf program. These individuals, including David Gamlin, Operation HOPE Midwest Board Member and MGP Director of Programming, led Dignity discussions with 125 high school seniors from various Detroit and Suburban High Schools. The Midnight Golf Program (MGP) is a 30 week after school program for high school seniors which was founded in 2001 by Renee Fluker.

The Midnight Golf Program give students valuable life skills and training, including financial literacy, assistance with the college application process and golf lessons taught by PGA professionals. Over 90% of all MGP participants attend college. Local senior program manager, Michele Hurst Burton, is a MGP mentor.

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