This past year I had the opportunity to serve on the LAS service trip LEAD team where I was able to spend the weekend facilitating meaningful conversation with the freshman LAS students. We discussed the history and injustices that Detroit has faced over the years and learned how gentrification is impacting the city as a result of new corporate entities that have settled there.
Saturday morning was spent volunteering with Class Community Social Services; I worked in their kitchen where I helped with food preparation. This was not my first experience with Cass Community Social Services as I’ve volunteered with them in the past. My past experience was making rubber mats to be sold for money that goes towards funding the organization, but working in the kitchen was a very different and new experience that allowed me to see the other side of things. I learned that they have a staff of only 4 members, but they serve thousands of people each year. I also learned that all of the meals prepared are provided strictly through donations. Operating the kitchen seems like a very difficult task, especially since it was hard when there were over a dozen volunteers assisting during the service trip, but the staff stays dedicated and uses innovative techniques to serve the population. This entire service trip allowed me to reflect on why I chose to go into social work in the first place; to help make the world a better place. I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to be apart of the service trip this year as it has come a long way. I look forward to seeing the impact it has not only on the city but the freshman LAS class on next year.