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History Blog

Guest Blogger Emilio

We are thrilled to announce that we have partnered with a new organization this summer, to help us cultivate a sense of responsibility in our young people in making our communities a better place. And that place is Dwelling Place of Grand Rapids. After hearing about Steepletown status as a grantee of the Grand Rapids Community Foundation, Dwelling Place reached out to us, expressing serious interest to create a partnership and become a work site for our summer employment program. Knowing the type of impact Dwelling Place has in the community, we were so grateful for such a request.

The selection process of our summer program is heavily dependent on the interest of the youth. We allow them to review what opportunities are available, and select their preferred sector specific track they would like to participate in. For our first year partnering with Dwelling Place, we couldn’t have selected a better candidate.

Andrew Q, 16 years old, attended the summer program orientation with a low hanging head, nervous tone, and overall shy demeanor. Andrew expressed interest in working outdoors, and a desire test his creativity. Andrew has “shocked” the staff of Dwelling Place. Andrews work site supervisor, Ken, says Andrew has the two qualities that are becoming so rare in today’s employer driven market: responsibility and initiative. Ken Ford, the Community Landscape & Gardening Coordinator has been in his role for less than a year. Since his work experience began, Ken reports Andrew’s confidence has risen tremendously, which we believe has to do with Ken’s constant support and encouragement. When asked what he enjoys most about the work experience, Andrew reports it is working with Ken. Andrew stated, “Ken is really easy to talk to. He listens to my opinion.” Ken says he is “thankful for a worker like Andrew, and honored to be mentoring him throughout this experience.”