Friendship House has helped many residents over the years.
Here are a few of their stories.
Just the other day, 6 year-old Anthony told us he was hungry. He lives with his mother and 3 siblings in Hamtramck.
Anthony's family has always known poverty. His mother Brianna never knew her mother, who passed away when she was two years old. She spent her childhood being passed from grandmothers to aunts, always looking for a place to call home.
Now, Brianna has 4 children, her GED, 9 months of classroom study at Everest Institute toward a Medical Assistant’s certificate and a job with Better Life Bags, a handbag company started by a woman in Hamtramck. She says “It’s been a long journey for me toward some sense of stability.”
Michael and david
Residents like Michael and his brother David who have lived on Lumpkin Street in Hamtramck their entire lives depend on Detroit Friendship House for extra food. Both Michael and David are physically and mentally challenged. Neither has ever been able to hold a job.
They each receive $142 per month from the Federal SNAP program, known to many as the “food stamp” or “bridge card” program.
That’s approximately $1.57 per meal - roughly a can of soup.
Angel counts on Detroit Friendship House when she is short on food for eight-month-old Caleb pictured here, and her other child at home. Angel works as a waitress at a local restaurant. She tells us. “I rely mostly on tips, so I don’t really know from week to week how much money I can depend on. A slow week means less food for my family.”
Ms. Mary is 66 years old. She retired from McDonald's after 35 years. She told us she had to quit after she was involved in a serious car accident that left her disabled. Currently, she lives on Social Security and Medicaid.
Mary lives alone in the house where she and her husband raised their three boys. Now the boys are grown, but sometimes it's difficult for Mary to maintain the family home by herself. Mary says it's difficult for her to have the whole burden of the house squarely on her shoulders - and she gets lonely - missing her husband, who passed away in 2002, very much.
Mary also gets some financial help through the SNAP program, known as Bridge Cards. Her bridge card is $31 per month, which doesn't go very far. Her neighbor told her about Detroit Friendship House and Mary has been coming ever since. She enjoys the good quality of food she receives from us. She tells us we have pretty much everything she needs. She also told us, "Everyone at Friendship House is friendly!"