MADE Institute in Flint expands program offering young offenders a fresh start

Leon El-Amin
Leon El-Amin(WJRT)
Published: Jul. 6, 2021 at 6:39 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - Two Flint organizations known for helping people turn their lives around have received a much needed financial boost.

The MADE Institute and the St. Luke New Life Center received $200,000 a little over a month ago. Both organizations are starting to put that grant money to good use starting Tuesday, putting on a job orientation for people looking to join the workforce.

“We do a lot of programming already for women and men who have been incarcerated, and this was just a good thing that could happen where the two of us could come together and have a greater impact,” said Sister Carol Weber with the St. Luke New Life Center.

She said the two-year $200,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Southeast Michigan will allow for on-the-job training for lawn care, making pallets and sewing.

“Many people who’ve been incarcerated for felonies – it’s hard to get a job. So we work with employers that will say we’ll give everyone a chance. And that’s what we all need to do is give everyone a chance,” Weber said.

MADE stands for money, attitude, direction and education. The program also helps troubled teens and people who have gotten in trouble with the law gain employment in the skilled trades field through paid on the job training.

“Just the opportunity to run the skilled trades program again is such a great benefit and opportunity for folks in the community, especially the people that we serve who need job training and things like that,” said Leon El-Amin with the MADE Institute.

The MADE Institute’s program works with local contractors to provide on-the-job paid training in areas like plumbing, electrical work and carpentry. The $200,000 grant will help MADE by allowing for 10 to 15 people to take part in that training.

“While we’re running the skilled trades program, we have employers coming in looking at potential candidates, so when they do graduate we do try and make sure we have them lined up for jobs and everything,” El-Amin said.

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