DETROIT, Mich. – Ilitch Charities closed out 2014 with contributions to five downtown organizations that support Detroit and its citizens, bringing 2014 total donations to more than $3 million dollars. Newly announced contributions totaling $70,000 will go to the Boll Family YMCA; S.A.Y. Detroit; Coalition on Temporary Shelter (COTS); Neighborhood Service Organization (NSO); and Boys Inspired Through Nurturing, Growth and Opportunities (BINGO).
“Detroit is our home, and we are committed to this city and its people,” said Christopher Ilitch, chairman of Ilitch Charities. “2015 will be an exciting year for Detroit and the Ilitch family of companies, and we will continue to partner with organizations that help make our community a better place for all.”
Charitable giving by Ilitch Charities and other Ilitch company entities totals more than $ 34.5 million dollars since 2005. Donations closing out 2014 were:
$25,000 to the Boll Family YMCA’s Detroit SWIMS program, which provides Detroit youth with free swimming lessons to address the fact that young people in underserved communities often do not learn critical water safety and swimming skills to keep them safe. This results in a disproportionate amount of deaths and injuries each year. This is the third year in a row in which Ilitch Charities has given to Detroit SWIMS, increasing the contribution each year.
$15,000 to S.A.Y. Detroit, which works to improve the lives of the neediest citizens through shelter, food, medical care, volunteer efforts and education. S.A.Y. Detroit was founded by Mitch Albom.
$10,000 to COTS Bright Beginnings program which is designed to keep homeless children happy and safe while providing high quality education. COTS was opened in 1982.
$10,000 to BINGO, a program emanating from the Bing Youth Institute with a focus on creating meaningful one-on-one mentoring experiences that help to unlock the unlimited potential of urban young men of color. BINGO was recently created by former Detroit Mayor Dave Bing.
$10,000 to the Neighborhood Service Organization’s The Road Home Program, a unique multi-disciplinary mobile outreach program which makes direct contact with homeless individuals and determines their needs, provides on-site medical and/or mental health services, with the ultimate goal of transporting them to an appropriate facility to receive ongoing care, support and housing, helping them to rejoin their community. In 2015, NSO will be celebrating its 60th year of serving metro-Detroit through various programs, outreach initiatives and services.
Significant Year-Round Giving from Ilitch Charities and the Ilitch Companies
Also in 2014, the annual Ilitch Charities Celebrity Golf Classic raised $50,000 each for the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History; Mariners Inn, a shelter and treatment center for the city’s homeless; and Detroit Employment Solutions, which helps get Detroiters back to work. The annual 2014 Ilitch Charities College Scholarship program also provided a total of $25,500 to ten local high school student athlete graduates.
Ilitch Charities also helps facilitate the activities of the Detroit Tigers Foundation and the Detroit Red Wings Foundation, combining to provide more than $3 million annually in grant, college scholarships, game tickets, youth sports programs and in-kind donations across the Detroit metropolitan area.
MotorCity Casino Hotel has donated more than $1.5 million dollars to the community including more than $100,000 last year alone. MCCH's Helping Hands committee is dedicated to helping create a healthy community through our support of programs that positively impact the quality of life in the metropolitan Detroit area. The group recommends and implements philanthropic initiatives that make a discernable difference in our community.
Another charitable initiative from an Ilitch-owned company, the Little Caesars Love Kitchen, has fed nearly three million meals to homeless, hungry and displaced families over the past 30 years. The Little Caesar’s Love Kitchen has served more than 3 million people more than 750,000 pies. A second truck was added last year to help further give back to the communities we serve. In recognition of these and other efforts, Food, Drink & Franchise magazine recently name Little Caesars in its list of “Top 10 Most Charitable Chains and Franchises” in the quick service industry.
Other annual charitable endeavors included the Tiger’s Autographs for a Cause, the Tip A Tiger program, the Detroit Red Wings School Assembly program and the increasingly popular 50/50 raffles offered by both the Detroit Tigers and the Detroit Red Wings during home games. Executives and players from the Red Wings also donated their time to ring the bell for the Salvation Army during the month of December, among other initiatives to support the heart of our community.
Currently, the Red Wings are the only team in the NHL, in which every one of its players has his own charitable program.
To find out more about donation activities & signature events of Ilitch Charities and the Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Tiger Foundations, including the annual Celebrity Golf Classic, Toast of Hockeytown & Keeping Kids in the Game charity events, visit IlitchCharities.org.