A group of about 20 blue-shirted Ford Motor Company employees helped freshen up the grounds of Lutheran Child & Family Service of Michigan on Nine Mile in Farmington Hills Tuesday, as part of a company-wide volunteer week.
Volunteers worked on landscaping and stained a long, worn bridge on the property formerly known as Boys & Girls Republic. The residential facility serves young people ages 12 to 18, who are experiencing cognitive impairments and emotional disorders.
Market rep specialist Angela Sakulidis, who led the team, said Ford employees can give at least 16 hours of service during the year. Tuesday was an "Accelerated Action Day" and part of the company's Global Caring Week.
"We tell them how big a group we have, and they find a home for us," she said. "It's an honor to work for Ford Motor Company. They don't just allow you to (volunteer), they encourage you to."
Eric Mitchell, with Ford Public Affairs, explained that volunteering is an every day part of the Ford mantra–but Global Caring Week is when efforts are really stepped up.
"It's about community building," he explained.
Volunteer Coordinator Terry Berry said the Accelerated Action Day drew out the most employees for community projects in one day.
Berry said there were 42 Ford projects happening Tuesday, with almost 500 volunteers throughout the U.S. participating.
"We decided Sept. 11 would be our volunteer day," Berry explained, "and it kept growing and growing."
In addition to the Farmington Hills project, volunteers in southeast Michigan worked on projects at Vista Maria in Dearborn Heights, the Henry Ford Estate in Dearborn, Habitat for Humanity in Ypsilanti, and several others.