Michigan Change for Children Organizations
Kids Food Basket
Kids Food Basket nourishes children living at or near the poverty level with critical evening meals to level the playing field for their academic achievement. Equipping children and families with greater access to fresh, locally grown food can help build a more vibrant, healthier West Michigan.
One way the Change for Children funds are used is to help provide Sack Suppers. They are a free, well-balanced evening meal full of nutritious food delivered to children so that they can perform their best. Sack Suppers are distributed within classrooms at the end of each school day and during summer programs too, meaning every child in need can get one easily and safely. Kids’ Food Basket serves children who attend schools where 70% or more of the student population receive free or reduced-cost lunch.
Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes
Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes is a 'Food Bank Plus.' This means that they acquire food through donations and distribute food at 73 distribution sites throughout Kalamazoo County via five food programs.
Change for Children specifically funds the Grocery Pantry Program. Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes distributes food at 24 Grocery Pantry Sites throughout Kalamazoo County, including those located in the outer county areas (Galesburg, Richland and Vicksburg), and a site at the main Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes’ facility. These 24 sites are neighborhood-based and located along easily-accessible transport routes for convenience. At the pantry, individuals select items from the nutritional categories based on the USDA's guidelines of protein, fruits and vegetables, and grains. Each food order contains four days worth of food for each member of their family.
The Haven of Rest Ministries
Specifically addressing the needs of children, funds from Change for Children help to actively maintain the Haven’s “Inasmuch House”, which is a 30 to 60-day emergency shelter for homeless women, children and families. Through this shelter, the Haven also maintains a comprehensive afterschool program for children of homeless families in their care.
Services provided at Inasmuch House:
Advocacy, life-skills and empowerment classes, support groups, case management and referrals to social service agencies.
The full-time case management to provide stability in an emergency situation and with appropriate programming to assist women, children and families in changing their behaviors, attitudes, habits, and thinking concerning how to become self-sufficient.
Inasmuch House provides room for 55 homeless individuals including women, children and families and is the only shelter in Calhoun County that houses male-inclusive families such as men with custody of their children and women with teenage boys.
Children learn self-confidence in a comfortable learning environment and learn positive coping mechanisms for dealing with family crisis.
Center For Women In Transition
The Center’s mission is to respond to, reduce, and prevent domestic and sexual violence. This mission will be achieved through education, collaboration, and advocacy, with crisis and supportive services to victims and survivors.
Funds from Change for Children help with The Child & Family Services program which is a series of structured sensory interventions based upon William Steele’s evidence-based trauma intervention program: Structured Sensory Interventions for Traumatized Children, Adolescents and Parents (SITCAP) and Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The goals of these therapeutic models are to increase children’s coping skills, decrease trauma symptoms and behaviors, and actively engage non-offending parents in the therapeutic process. The ultimate goal is to reduce the trauma symptoms the child is experiencing and promote positive childhood development.
Change for Children is thankful to be able to help with the support of survivors through these programs, and we also love that the Center for Women in Transition also aims to help prevent the violence all together! While CWIT will always be ready to respond to the immediate needs of survivors in the community, they are equally committed to preventing violence before it starts. Efforts to break the cycle of violence need to start early in order to make a lasting difference.
Helen DeVos Children's Hospital
The Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital opened its doors in 1993, and treats patients from birth to 18 years of age. Located in the greater Grand Rapids metro area, they treat patients from each of the 83 counties in Michigan.
Change for Children funds help with The Dick and Linda Antonini Hospital School Program at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, to help bridge the gap between the hospital, school, and home. The program provides educational opportunities during treatment and informs the school and parents of any future educational concerns due to medical illness, and helps patients maintain involvement in normal routines.
Funds from Change for Children are used to help purchase various supplies and materials for the Dick and Linda Antonini Hospital School Program. Change for Children wants to see children supported during their time in the hospital. We help bring backpacks to schools so we believe children having those supplies in the hospital is equally important.