Summer in the City strives to improve and expand community service in Metro Detroit. By bringing a diverse group of young people together to invest their energy in Detroit, Summer in the City programs address the immediate needs of city neighborhoods and foster a regional mindset.
Summer in the City is “fun, flexible, and fulfilling” for volunteers and “practical, productive and purposeful” for community organizations. Volunteers can participate any or every day of the summer with no commitment, simply by coming to one of our ten carpool sites throughout the region.
Summer in the City values collaboration and regionalism. All projects are done in partnership with organizations in Detroit — from nonprofits to community development corporations to schools — and are designed to best meet the needs of the people these groups serve. Further, SITC brings together volunteers from all across Metro Detroit, (and sometimes even across the country) to engage each other and invest their creativity and compassion in Detroit.
Last summer, an average of 200 volunteers per day contributed their time and energy to projects throughout Detroit. Since Summer in the City began, over 5500 volunteers have performed 175,000 hours of high-impact community service. While the program has grown dramatically since its inception, it has always maintained the core principles of youth empowerment, diversity, inclusiveness, and sustainability.
“The Crew” encompasses all of the amazing leaders who help run Summer in the City. Comprised primarily of college students and recent graduates, the Crew is responsible for the continued success of the program. Click on the pictures below to learn more about our Crew members.
2014 Crew information coming soon!
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
SUMMER 2014 FAST FACTS
- Our 13th summer begins on Tuesday, June 24 and ends Friday, August 15, 2014
- We will operate ten carpool sites.
- Registration will open by May 1, 2014 and close on August 14, 2014.
- Volunteers should arrive at carpool sites between 8:30 and 8:45 depending on the site
FUN, FLEXIBLE, FULFILLING
The eight week summer program is the heart of Summer in the City. From June 24th to August 15th, our unmistakable t-shirts can be seen all around Metro Detroit. Working alongside Summer in the City’s invaluable crew members, volunteers can Paint murals around the city, Plant in community and urban gardens, or Play and mentor neighborhood children at any of our youth enrichment sites.
Fun. Summer in the City is an organization run by young, charismatic Detroiters who think volunteer work should be infused with energy, humor, and sunshine. In short, volunteering can and should be fun. And it’s not just the volunteer work that’s exciting, you’ll meet lots of great new people on site each day!
Flexible. After completing registration, volunteers can participate on any project day with no advance notification. Volunteers arrive at any of our ten carpool sites before embarking for the day’s project sites between 8:30 and 8:50 am. At the carpool sites, volunteers are assigned to cars based on project preference. You may not get your first pick, but we will try our best. After a fulfilling day’s work, volunteers return to the carpool site around 2 pm each day.
Fulfilling. The projects chosen each day are not only fun, but have a significant impact on the community. Upon arriving at the project site, volunteers are greeted by a crew member who will explain the day’s activities and the effect they have on the surrounding neighborhood. Volunteers are expected to work hard, get dirty, and come home smiling each day.
The Fun, Flexible, and Fulfilling model has spurred the continuous growth of the organization, and we expect this year to be no different. Over the last 13 years, Summer in the City has grown from humble beginnings with 20 volunteers per day to today’s 200-plus volunteers working alongside each other at 10 to 15 sites each day.
Who: Anyone who is at least 14 years old (or who has completed 8th grade) and has completed registration. We ask groups to fill out this form [link coming soon!] to best coordinate logistics and programming.
When: June 24 to August 15, Tuesday to Friday, from 9 am to 2 pm. Please arrive at the carpool sites by 8:45 am (8:30 for Ann Arbor).
Where: Volunteers meet at our carpool sites before driving to Detroit to participate in the day’s activities.
Why: Because it’s awesome.
Summer in the City tries to make volunteering as simple as possible for individuals and groups. After completing registration, individual volunteers can participate as much as they want with no advance notice required. The program runs for eight weeks every summer — June 24 to August 15 in 2014 — and from 9 am to 2 pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Carpool Sites. Volunteers need only show up at any of our ten carpool sites by 8:45 am (8:30 for Ann Arbor). Importantly, you should wear clothes you don’t mind dirtying and sturdy shoes – no sandals or flip flops. Upon arriving, our friendly crew members will be present to greet you and answer any questions you or your parents may have. Scroll down for the list of carpool site locations and a short video overview of how carpool sites work in the morning. After signing in for the day, crew members will do their best to accommodate volunteers’ project preferences and then assign volunteers to a vehicle. We ask all volunteers 18 and up to be willing to drive on occasion, as we do not own enough vehicles to transport every volunteer every day.
Daily Schedule. Volunteers depart for project sites at 9 am each morning, arriving to the sites around 9:30 am. Upon arriving at the site, our crew site leader will give a brief overview of the day’s activities and any necessary site rules and procedures.We provide a small snack and water at every site, however volunteers are encouraged to bring their own snacks and water bottle because lunch is not provided. The site activities conclude between 1 and 1:30 pm, and volunteers then depart to return to the carpool sites by 2 pm.
Credit. We want you to get the credit you deserve for volunteering with us! We work hard to take and record accurate attendance everyday. Volunteers receive 4 hours of service credit each day — five if they drive. After the summer (by the end of August), we send everyone a certificate with the number of hours volunteered via email. If your certificate is incorrect for any reason, or you did not receive an hours certificate, please fill out this form.
Heads-Up Volunteers. While we never require you to let us know when you are coming, knowing who is planning on coming and what projects they prefer, wants to do what each day helps us pick projects each day. Keep an eye out for links to the Heads-Up Forms as summer approaches.
Here’s a short video to let you know what to expect when you arrive at a carpool site in the morning.
Have any questions? Send us an email.
See you this summer!
Summer in the City is a great experience for everyone, including groups who want to participate together. The benefits of signing up as a group include the option to bypass the carpool sites, flexible arrival and departure times, and ensuring that everyone in your group gets to work on their preferred project together. A dedicated staff member will greet your group at the project site and be available to assist your group as necessary.
Summer in the City also has adopted curriculum to help facilitate discussions about Detroit: the social, political, and economic issues facing the region — and the role volunteerism plays in the community. If your group is interested, a trained crew member will be available to facilitate a discussion focused on one of these issues during your time at the project site.
While groups are strongly encouraged to schedule their time when our other volunteers are at project sites, groups may be able to schedule their visit for nights, weekends, or our offseason subject to project availability. Finally, the organization’s headquarters is able to host groups of up to 15 during the offseason for alternative breaks, retreats, or other volunteering-focused events. Please email us directly if you would like more information about staying with us.
JOIN THE CREW
The team behind Summer in the City is known (the world over!) as The Crew. With only one year-round employee — herself a Crew alum — The Crew is responsible for nearly everything Summer in the City does. Think of it as an internship where you can actually run the program.
While the Crew certainly has more responsibility than the volunteers, the positions remain … Fun, Flexible, and Fulfilling. Crew members ensure that campers have the best day of the summer every day, murals are worthy of national commercials, and gardens grow greener. Crew members are only required to commit to two days per week; however, the more you are able to commit, the more responsibility and opportunity you will have. Finally, we work with each Crew member to ensure that the work he or she does is relevant and rewarding.
If you know what role you hope to play as a Crew member, please let us know in the Interest Form. If you know you want to join the Crew, but are not sure exactly where you fit or what role you are interested in, don’t worry. Roughly half the Crew members have specific roles, while the other half are able to move between projects and responsibilities throughout the summer.
Crew members generally start in earnest in early June. There will be orientation(s) where the basics of Summer in the City are covered along with an overview of how the rest of the summer will transpire. If you are not available to start in early June, please let us know in the Interest Form and we will be sure to let you know what opportunities would still be available. On the other hand, if you would like to start earlier than June, there are always things to be done and we can work out an early start date and schedule.
Summer in the City is a “volunteer enterprise.” Some Crew positions receive a stipend, while other are unpaid. However, we will work with you to find potential funding sources or receive course credit for your time if you let us know early enough. And we’ll reimburse you for driving and make sure you’re well fed.
Make your general donation today!
Thank you for your consideration!
So, you’re considering making a contribution to Summer in the City!
Summer in the City is a program of volunteers, partnerships, friends, Detroit lovers and so many more. In short: People just like you help make SITC happen!
Who supports SITC?
What kind of things do you spend your money on?
SITC is funded completely by private donations from people and groups who believe in what we do. The majority of our budget is comprised of $25 to $250 donations and every dollar really does make a difference to our efforts.
Great question! We provide all the paint for our murals, supplies for our youth programs, transportation and more. In other words, the things that directly impact the caliber of our service projects. As important, is what we don’t spend money on – Summer in the City has virtually no overhead so the overwhelming majority of every donation, whatever size, goes directly to our projects and partnerships. Also, we supply all of our participants will a healthy dose of smiles. These are very expensive.