What’s the Word Wednesdays with United Way

Join us for live conversations on topics that affect your life

Join us every week for What’s the Word Wednesday — United Way’s live virtual town halls. Every week, experts will share updates on important topics like unemployment, utility assistance, child care, education and more, and answer your questions live.

This series also includes live town halls on equity issues, including equity in child care, business, criminal justice and updates from government and nonprofit equity organizations and task forces.

Watch live via Zoom or Facebook on select Wednesdays at 10 a.m.


Upcoming Town Halls

Wednesdays at 10 a.m.

July 24: Get Outside: Outdoor Recreation & Land Connection
Please join us for a town hall focused on the benefits of outdoor recreation, the connection to the land within the Black community and accessibility of outdoor spaces in Michigan. We will be joined by Ian Solomon of Amplify Outside and the Emmy-award winning PBS series, Ian Outside and Great Lakes Now.
Join us on Zoom
Join us on Facebook Live

Have a question or want to suggest a topic? Email LiveUnited@UnitedWaySEM.org.

Past Town Halls

Watch recordings and find resource lists from past virtual town halls.

June 26: Equity Challenge Series: Navigating LGBTQIA+ Health Care
Please join us for a Pride month town hall as we learn more about LGBTQIA+ health and wellness and how to navigate social norms and health care. We will be joined by Kelz Cousins from Kelz Liberatory Creations & Consulting. This event is part of a series of town halls focused on diversity and equity issues in collaboration with the 21-Day Equity Challenge.

June 12: Equity Challenge Series: Birthing Equity for Mothers in Prisons
Please join us for a birth equity town hall as we learn more about current and future doula care in prisons. We will be joined by Tedda Hughes and Cara Genisio from Michigan Prison Doula Initiative. This event is part of a series of town halls focused on diversity and equity issues in collaboration with the 21-Day Equity Challenge.

June 5: Equity Challenge Series: Embracing Equity in Nonprofits Panel
Please join us for a community-led panel discussion with leaders across nonprofits who embrace equity and took part in developing content for our 21-Day Equity Challenge. Hear from our friends at Avalon Healing Center, Community Housing Network, and Nonprofit Enterprise at Work (NEW). This event is part of a series of town halls focused on diversity and equity issues in collaboration with the 21-Day Equity Challenge. Please note that this town hall is 45 minutes.

May 29: Equity Challenge Series: Welcoming Equity for Immigrants and Refugees
Please join us for a town hall focused on equity for immigration, refugees and resettlements. We will be joined by Shrina Eadeh and Shadin Atiyeh from Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw County. This event is part of a series of town halls focused on diversity and equity issues in collaboration with the 21-Day Equity Challenge.

May 22: Equity Challenge Series: Defending Equity in the Legal System
Please join us for a town hall focused on equity for the legal and justice system. We will be joined by Justin Williams from Lakeshore Legal Aid. This event is part of a series of town halls focused on diversity and equity issues in collaboration with the 21-Day Equity Challenge.

April 24: Keeping Detroit a Bee City
Celebrate Global Volunteer Month as we learn about beekeeping, green spaces and urban gardens in Detroit. Timothy Paule Jackson and Nicole Lindsey, the founders of Detroit Hives, discuss their incredible work. You’ll also learn how you can get involved!

April 17: Importance of Out of School Programs: How Parents and Kids Can Get Involved
Please join us to learn about upcoming summer and after-school programming and the importance of out-of-school time activities! We will be joined by Alise Dixon from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan.

March 27: Exploring our Libraries: A Reading Month Town Hall
Please join us in celebrating Reading Month as we hear from our partners at public libraries across our region. They will share the wealth of knowledge and access within our libraries and the importance of literacy. Our speakers include Vernadette McAllister at Detroit Public Library, Kevin L. Brown at Pontiac Public Library and Suzy Shipman at Redford Township District Library.

March 20: Women in the Boardroom: A Women’s History Month Panel
Please join us in celebrating Women’s History Month with incredible women who sit on the board of directors for foundations and nonprofit organizations across our community. They’ll share their journeys, discuss the importance of representation in women’s leadership and give advice on joining a nonprofit board. Our panelists include Wendy Lewis-Jackson at The Kresge Foundation, Audrey Harvey at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation, Maria Dwyer at Clark Hill and Tonya Adair at United Way for Southeastern Michigan.

Feb. 28: The History, Legacy and Truths of Black Farmers and Gardeners
Please join us as we celebrate and honor Black History Month with a discussion focused on the historical and current contributions, achievements of and inequities experienced by Black farmers and gardeners. We will be joined by four community leaders and farmers to share their truth about the history of Black farming, systemic racism in agriculture, land loss and how we can build power with Black farmers in our region. We will be joined by Patricia Wells, a master gardener of Superior Township; Dr. Finn Bell, founder of the Ypsi Farmers & Gardeners Oral History Project; farmer T.C. Collins, one of the only registered Black farmers in Washtenaw County; and Dr. Shakara Tyler, lecturer at University of Michigan-Dearborn.

Feb. 21: Winter Resource Series: Finding Power in Domestic Violence Survivorship
Please join us for another winter resource series town hall focused on providing client-empowered care to domestic violence survivors. We will be joined by Executive Director at First Step, Lori Kitchen Buschel, to share about how First Step is empowering survivors and providing critical services in our region.

Feb. 7: 2-1-1 Day: How 2-1-1 Responds to Disasters
Please join us for a special 2-1-1-focused town hall in celebration of 2-1-1 Day on Feb. 11. United Way for Southeastern Michigan’s 2-1-1 Director, Tasha Ball, will share about our 2-1-1 helpline and how it responds to community needs during times of disaster.

Jan. 31: Working Michigan Families: How to Ensure You Get Your Tax Credit!
Please join us for a town hall focused on the Michigan Earned Income Tax Credit for Working Families (EITC) to help ensure you have the information needed to receive your tax credit! We will be joined by Megan Thibos, Director of Community Impact Innovation from United Way for Southeastern Michigan to talk about free tax preparation services and the EITC expansion, which will begin to roll out on Feb. 13, 2024.

Jan. 17: Youth Leadership: Unity and our Civil Rights Leaders
Please join us for a powerful town hall in honor of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights leaders. We will be joined by Jerjuan Howard, the founder and CEO of Umoja Debate League and Umoja Village, to talk about the importance of caring for young people and empowering them with public speaking and debate skills while rooting leadership through teachings from civil right leaders.

Jan. 24: Winter Resource Series: The Power of Food Networks
Please join us for another winter resource series town hall focused on the power of building partner networks in Washtenaw County to provide food across our communities. We will be joined by Markell Lewis Miller, the director of Community Food Programs at Food Gatherers, to talk about how their organization builds a network of partners to provide hunger relief throughout Washtenaw County and the importance of food rescue during winter months.

Dec. 20: Winter Resource Series: Combatting the Winter Blues
Please join us for another segment of our winter resource series town hall focused on combatting the winter blues. We will be joined by Uriel Stephens from Easterseals MORC to talk about the importance of caring for our mental health during the winter months, techniques for coping with holiday stressors and available self-screening options.

Dec. 13: Winter Resource Series: Youth Homelessness and Prevention
Please join us for our first winter resource series town hall focused on youth homelessness, prevention and resources. We will be joined by Courtney Smith from the Detroit Phoenix Center to talk about homelessness prevention and wraparound supports for young people.

Nov. 22: Not Your Average Food Panel: Inclusive and Accessible Food
Please join us for a special food panel discussion on the importance of inclusive food options available to our community, such as Halal, Kosher and medical food needs. Our panelists include Monica Boomer of Zaman International, Daniella Mechnikov of Yad Ezra, Evan Killingsworth of MiGen Connect and Angela Wolf of Redford Interfaith Relief.

Oct. 25: Utility Assistance: What You Need To Know for 2023-2024
Sean Scane, director of utility services at United Way for Southeastern Michigan, joins us for our annual update on the MEAP program and other utility assistance programs and answers questions from attendees.

Oct. 4: Hispanic Heritage Month: Stories of Immigrant Families
Speaker: Dr. Maria Militzer
Please join us as we honor Hispanic Heritage Month with Dr. Maria Militzer, president and CEO of Mexiquenses Unidos de Michigan, as she shares the resilient stories of immigrant families and family reunification.

Sept. 27: The Child Care Funding Cliff: What to Expect and How to Find Child Care
Speakers: Kristal Johnson & Jolene Andriaschko
Please join us to talk about the child care funding cliff, what to expect and how to find child care with Kristal Johnson, director of early childhood initiatives at United Way for Southeastern Michigan, and Jolene Andriaschko, manager of the early childhood support network at United Way for Southeastern Michigan.

Aug. 23: Michigan School Meals: Learn About the New Free Meals Program
Speakers: Natalee Mickelson, Caitlyn Wood, and Katie McConkie
Please join us for an important panel discussion with the Michigan Department of Education and Lamphere Schools to talk about Michigan’s new free school meals program.

Aug. 9: Uniting for a Brighter Future: A United Way Merger Town Hall
Join United Way for Southeastern Michigan president and CEO, Dr. Darienne Hudson, and United Way of Washtenaw County president and CEO, Pam Smith, as they talk about the historic United Way merger and how we’re uniting for a brighter future for everyone in our region. Please note that this town hall is 45 minutes.

July 26: Healing & Prioritizing Self: A BIPOC Mental Health Month Panel Discussion
Join us for a panel discussion with several mental health practitioners in recognition of BIPOC Mental Health Month to talk about healing and prioritizing yourself. Please note that this town hall is 45 minutes.

July 12: Walk A Mile Mentorship: A Program for Formerly Incarcerated Individuals
Tony Mills, mentor coordinator with the Michigan Department of Corrections, joins us to talk about the new mentoring program for formerly incarcerated individuals and opportunities to get involved as a mentor.

In May and June, we ran a special series of What’s the Word Wednesday town halls focused on topics around diversity, equity and inclusion in coordination with United Way’s third annual 21-Day Equity Challenge. View content from past Equity Challenges.

June 7: PRIDE MONTH: Supporting and Serving the LGBTQ+ Community
Join us in recognition of Pride Month for a town hall with United Way partners Affirmations, PRISM Detroit, Ruth Ellis Center, Transgender Michigan and MiGen Network to talk about what it means to serve the LGBTQ+ community today. This event is part of a series of town halls focused on diversity and equity issues in collaboration with the 21-Day Equity Challenge

May 31: Elder Law, Estate Planning and Legal Services
Lakeshore Legal Aid will join us to talk about the importance of creating equitable access to legal services for seniors and other vulnerable populations.

May 24: What does it mean to be a Jewish service agency?
Join us for a panel discussion with Friendship Circle of Michigan, Jewish Family Service of Metro Detroit and other organizations in recognition of Jewish Heritage Month and celebration of the contributions of the Jewish community to our region.

May 10: Equity in Outdoor Access with Black to the Land
Black to the Land Coalition joins us for a conversation on how to expand access to outdoor spaces for BIPOC communities.

April 19: Behavioral Health and Substance Abuse Outreach and Resources
Leonard Pennisi, LMSW, a behavioral health coordinator with ACCESS, joins us to share updates on the organization’s expanding behavioral health work, as well as resources and support community members can access.

April 12: Medicaid Unwinding: How Post-COVID Changes Could Impact Your Coverage
Amber Bellazaire, senior policy analyst with the Michigan League for Public Policy, joins us to talk through what the end of COVID-era protections for Medicaid and CHIP will mean for Michigan families, and what you need to do to stay enrolled.

March 15: Get Help With Residential Water Assistance
Struggling to pay your water bills? Learn about water assistance programs available through United Way and our partners Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency, Macomb Community Action Agency and Oakland Livingston Human Services Agency.

March 8: Women in Nonprofit Leadership
An International Women’s Day discussion on gender equity and intersectionality with Detroit Disability Power, Black Mothers Breastfeeding Association and the Pure Heart Foundation for this panel discussion.

March 1: The State of Urban Education: A Conversation with the Divine 9
Join us for a panel discussion with representatives from four of the nine Black Greek Letter organizations represented in the National Pan-Hellenic Council. We’ll discuss their thoughts on urban education and share ongoing scholarship opportunities for youth.

Feb. 15: A Black History Month talk with Ken Coleman
Celebrate Black History Month with United Way as we welcome journalist, author and historian Ken Coleman. Ken will share stories from his work, as well as the rich history of Detroit’s Black neighborhoods, businesses and culture.

Feb. 8: Learn About the 2-1-1 Resource Directory
Tasha Ball, Director, 2-1-1 Operations and Nyesha Motley, Manager, Resource Directory joined us to discuss how United Way’s 2-1-1 helpline is powered by a comprehensive directory of tens of thousands of resources. Learn about how you can use our directory and why 2-1-1 is the best way to find accurate, current resources like food and shelter.

Jan. 25: What to Expect in 2023 Michigan Legislation: A Conversation with United Way and Michigan League for Public Policy CEOs
With the start of a new year comes new legislators and new policy priorities at the state and federal levels. As Michigan’s new legislature begins its work for 2023, Monique Stanton, President and CEO of the Michigan League for Public Policy, will join United Way for Southeastern Michigan President and CEO Dr. Darienne Hudson to share what we can expect to see in the year ahead in Michigan’s legislation.

Dec. 21: How You Can Support Food Assistance with Gleaners
Speakers: Denise Leduc, Director of Volunteers and Service Insights; Katie Body, Community Giving Manager, Gleaners
Our partner Gleaners Food Bank joins us to talk about volunteerism and food drive efforts and how the community can help support food assistance programs this winter.

Dec. 14: Mental Health and Substance Use: A Panel Discussion
Speakers: Erinn Alderman Rowland, CARE of Southeastern Michigan; Dunya Barash, Families Against Narcotics; Amy Hostinski, Oakland Family Services
Several organizations that work on mental health and substance use in southeastern Michigan will join us for this town hall tackling the issues of substance use and abuse and how it relates to mental health.

Nov. 16: Building School Readiness with LENA Start
Dr. Teresa Holtrop, pediatrician and co-founder of the Wayne Children’s Healthcare Access Program

Nov. 9: Holiday Food Access: Where to Find It and How to Help
Kelli Kaschimer, Director, Volunteer and Client Services; and Krista Poole, Manager, Client Services from Forgotten Harvest joins us. They will discuss food services available for families in need this holiday season, as well as how members of the community can help support families during the holidays.

Oct. 19: Promote the Vote: Voter Access and Rights
United Way and Promote the Vote coalition to talk about voter access and rights, plus efforts to expand voter access through the Promote the Vote ballot initiative.

Oct. 12: Utility Assistance: What You Need to Know for 2022-23
Sean Scane, director of utility initiatives at United Way for Southeastern Michigan, joins us for our annual update on the MEAP program and other utility assistance programs and answer questions from attendees.

Sept. 28: Diaper Need Awareness Week: Keeping Babies Clean, Healthy and Dry
Veronica Claybrone from the Detroit Diaper Bank and Shadora Ford from Destined for Greatness join us in recognition of Diaper Need Awareness Week to talk about barriers and supports for families in need of diapers, formula and other crucial baby supplies.

Sept. 14: How to Get Engaged With Connect 313 This Digital Inclusion Week
Connect 313 joins us once again to preview the events of Digital Inclusion Week, held Oct. 3-7, and talk about how youth, families and organizations can be involved.

Sept. 7: Fostering Access, Rights and Equity for Working Women
Shannon Garrett of the Michigan Women’s Commission joins us for a Labor Day week town hall to discuss the Fostering Access, Rights and Equity grant and its impact on women workers who are marginalized or earn low wages.

Aug. 24: COVID-19 and Kids: Your Questions Answered
As families prepare for back-to-school, Dr. Scott Grant, MD. Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine at Children’s Hospital of Michigan, joins us to share updates on what parents should know about COVID-19, the flu and vaccinations, as well as answer attendee questions about COVID-19 and vaccinations.

Aug. 17: Education & Equity: A Back-to-School Town Hall
Speaker: Silver Moore, Educator, Founder of Classroom Clapback, and Program Director at SDM2: Project Education

Aug. 3: Behavioral Health Services for Children and Families
Speaker: Donna Chavous, Community Engagement Team Lead for Development Center’s Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic

July 27: Mental Health Equity and Services
Speaker: Dr. Shama Faheem, Chief Medical Officer, Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network

July 20
: What You Need to Know Before the Aug. 2 Election
Speaker: Aghogho Edevbie, Michigan State Director, All Voting is Local
June 29: Supporting Indigenous populations and Veterans with South Eastern Michigan Indians
June 15: Housing Rights and Justice with HOPE Pontiac and the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness

June 8: Disability Rights and Justice with Detroit Disability Power

May 18: Equity in Maternal Health
Birth Detroit and Mothering Justice will hold a panel discussion about maternal health and the issues facing expecting parents and families in accessing quality care.

May 11: Connect 313 updates
Join City of Detroit Digital Inclusion Director Joshua Edmonds to learn about the Affordable Connectivity Plan and Detroit’s Fiber Infrastructure Internet Plan.

April 20: Learn About Foster Care with the Ennis Center

April 13: Finding the Best Summer Programs for Your Kids:

March 23: Learn about the new Michigan Homeowners Assistance Fund

March 16: Reading Month: Advancing Literacy in Our Homes and Neighborhoods

Feb. 16: Tax season: How to get free, professional tax help through the VITA program

Feb. 9: Celebrate 2-1-1 Awareness month: Finding resources and support through United Way’s 2-1-1 Helpline

Jan. 19: Honoring the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy with the Detroit Alphas

Jan. 12: What’s Coming Up in 2022 Legislation
Julie Cassidy and Alex Rossman from the Michigan League for Public Policy join us to discuss anticipated state and federal policies for the year ahead.

Dec. 15: Mental Health: Seasonal Depression and Coping with Holidays

Dec. 8: Youth Mental Health
Detroit-based organization Caleb’s Kids joins us to talk about how we can support the youth in our lives who may be dealing with mental illness.

Dec. 1: Housing resources for homeowners
Wayne Metro Community Action Agency joins us to talk about resources available to homeowners who may be struggling to afford their bills or at risk of foreclosure.

Nov. 17: Celebrating Trans Awareness Week: Supporting LGBTQ+ Youth
Mark Erwin and Lilianna Reyes from the Ruth Ellis Center join us to talk about their work supporting LGBTQ+ youth and young adults, and how you can support them.

Nov. 10: Resources for Veterans
In recognition of Veterans Day, Ryan Engle from the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency joins us to share resources for veterans and updates on programs.

Nov. 3: Holiday Volunteerism
Learn how to find volunteer opportunities that fit your needs and schedule through our Volunteer Portal, and hear from Focus: HOPE about ways you can give back as a volunteer this winter.

Oct. 27: Michigan Works! Updates
Jennifer Llewellyn, director of Oakland County Michigan Works! and the Manager of Workforce Development at Oakland County, will join us to share updates on workforce programs available to job-seekers.

Oct. 20: Resources and Programs for Disabled Individuals
Lori Hill-Sanders, executive director of the Disability Network of Wayne County – Detroit, will join us to talk about resources available to people with disabilities and highlight their work in this area.

Oct. 13: Supporting Afghan Refugees with Samaritas
Samaritas will join us to share information and resources on how we can support Afghan refugees.

Oct. 6: Mental Health and Wellness: Prioritizing Self-Care During COVID-19
Dr. Krystle Woods will join us to talk about mental health awareness, resources and more.

Sept. 29: Updates on the MEAP program
Sean Scane, MEAP project manager at United Way, will join us to share updates on our utility assistance program before enrollment opens this fall.

Sept. 22: Latine Equity in the Labor Movement
The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement will join us for this Latin and Hispanic Heritage Month town hall.

Sept. 15: Centering Community Voice: Why Your Story is Important to Grant-making
Our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion team will join us to talk about our partnerships with equity-focused organizations, and Detroit Future City will share why your story is important in grant-making.

Sept. 8: Emergency Rental Assistance: Updates on the CERA Program
Michael Centi, department director of integration at Wayne Metro Community Action Agency, joins us to talk about the latest information renters need to know when facing eviction.
Download the PowerPoint presentation

Aug. 25: Run United Virtual Marathon
Join United Way to learn about getting involved in our upcoming virtual marathon Sept. 15-Oct. 17, and how you can turn your miles into support for students in our community!

Aug. 18: Back-to-School Health and Safety – What Parents Need to Know
A conversation about COVID-19 safety and new recommendations from the Detroit Health Department.

Aug. 11: Learn about redistricting and your important role in it with the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission. Click here to view and download the presentation slides.

Aug. 4: FEMA Flood Recovery Resources
A speaker from FEMA joins us to walk through how individuals affected by flooding in Wayne and Washtenaw counties can apply for assistance.

July 28: Connect313 Updates: Accessing the Emergency Broadband Benefit
Joshua Edmonds, Director of Digital Inclusion for the City of Detroit, joins us to share news about the Connect313 coalition, and how families can access discounted internet and devices through the Emergency Broadband Benefit.

July 21: How to Combat Ableism and Be a Disability Rights Ally
Dessa Cosma, executive director of Detroit Disability Power, joins us as we recognize the anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act to talk about how to recognize and combat ableism.

July 14: Voter Rights Updates: What to Know Before You Vote
Merissa Kovach, policy analyst for the ACLU of Michigan, joins us to share updates on voter rights, including recent and proposed legislative changes.

June 23: Exploring the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Massacre
Journalist Phil Lewis joins us to share his research and learnings about the Tulsa Massacre.

June 16: Child Tax Credit: What It Is and How to Get It
Matt Heatherwick, director of individual tax programs at Accounting Aid Society, joins us to talk about how families can make sure they receive the new Child Tax Credit starting in July. Click here to view and download the presentation. slides.

June 9: Meet up and Eat Up Summer 2021 Updates
Gleaners and the City of Detroit Parks and Recreation Department join us to give updates and answer questions about how families can access free summer meals for youth.

June 2: Equity in the LGBTQIA+ Community: As we begin celebrating Pride Month, Affirmations joins us to talk about their work in the LGBTQA+ community and how you can get involved.

May 26: COVID-19 vaccination updates: MSU Associate Dean for Public Health Integration and Director of the Flint Center for Health Equity Solutions Debra Furr-Holden, Ph.D. joins us to give updates on the COVID-19 vaccine efficacy and safety and talk about dispelling vaccine myths.

May 19: The 21-Day Equity Challenge: United Way’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Team shares updates on our upcoming Equity Challenge, kicking off May 21.

May 12: Finding Summer Programs for Youth: Sara Plachta Elliott of Detroit’s Youth Development Resource Center joins us with updates on Discover Your Spark, a program for finding after-school and summer enrichment programs for kids.

May 5, 10 a.m.: Eviction Protection and the COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) Program: Michael Centi from Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency and Kelli Rose from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services join us to share details about new programs to protect renters.

April 28, 10 a.m.: Workplace Safety During COVID-19: Sean Egan, director of COVID-19 Workplace Safety at Michigan LEO, joins us on Workers Memorial Day to talk about workplace safety measures.

April 21: Equity in the Arab American Community: Rana Abbas-Taylor, director of communications and marketing at ACCESS, joins us to talk about the organization’s work to drive progress in racial equity and social justice in and for the Arab American community.

April 14: Sexual Assault Awareness Month: Resources for Survivors: Shelby Nardone, prevention education specialist and Survivor Speakers Bureau coordinator at HAVEN, joins us to share resources for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, plus information about consent.

April 7: Communities of Interest: Why and How to Get Involved With Redistricting: Rebeka Islam, executive director at APIAVote, joins us to talk about the work APIAVote is doing around the issue of political redistricting.

March 31: Mi Reconnect: Get Your Degree Tuition-Free: Kerry Ebersole, senior advisor and director of the Sixty by 30 Office in Michigan’s Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity, joined us to talk about how you can apply for tuition-free college through Michigan Reconnect.

March 24: Early Literacy: Why It’s Important to Bring Diverse Stories to Your Children and How to Talk About Them: United Way Early Childhood Training and Technical Assistance Specialist Ashley Hart joined us for a March is Reading Month conversation on teaching kids about diversity through books.

March 10: Filing Your Taxes: Everything You Need to Know: Accounting Aid Society and Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency share information about free tax preparation help available to Metro Detroiters, as well as what you need to know about available tax credits.

March 3: Adult Literacy: Making Reading Accessible for All: Lisa Machesky, executive director of the Oakland County Literacy Council, joins us to discuss how the literacy council and other partners are working to help increase adult literacy.

Feb. 24, 10 a.m.: Returning to In-Person Learning: A conversation with Kyle Guerrant, deputy superintendent with the Michigan Department of Education, on safety, regulations and plans for the reopening of schools for in-person learning.

Feb. 17: Michigan Poverty Task Force Update : A conversation with Kim Trent, deputy director – prosperity, Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity

Feb. 10, 10 a.m.: Child Care Updates: Safety, Eligibility, Virtual Opportunities and more: As many parents explore their options for putting their children back in child care in 2021, join us for a conversation with Starfish Family Services and Wayne RESA for updates on child care openings and safety.

Feb. 3: COVID-19 Vaccine – Your Questions Answered: A conversation with Henry Ford Health System on the new COVID-19 vaccines, including answers about safety and creation of vaccines.

Jan. 27: Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan’s New Resource Center: CCSM shares details about services available at their new resource center, Centers for the Works of Mercy.

Jan. 20: Unemployment updates: A conversation with the State of Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity on updates to state and federal unemployment benefits available to Michigan residents.
Download the presentation slides

Jan. 13: Equity in Criminal Justice Reform: A conversation with Safe and Just Michigan on recent and upcoming state criminal justice legislation.

Jan. 6: What to Expect in 2021 Legislation: A conversation with the Michigan League for Public Policy on upcoming state and federal legislation.

Dec. 16: Renters’ Rights: Housing and Eviction Resources During COVID-19: Joe McGuire, staff attorney with the Detroit Justice Center, discusses the rights of homeowners and renters, and what options people have for support if the federal eviction moratorium ends in January.

Dec 9: Equity in Business: How to Support Minority Small Businesses: Dr. Kenneth Harris, President and CEO of the National Business League, joins us to discuss what we can do to support minority-owned businesses this holiday season and beyond.

Dec. 2: COVID-19 Update: How to stay safe during the holidays: Join United Way and Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services senior public health physician, for an important update on COVID-19 as we head into the holiday season.

Nov. 25: Equity in Black Maternal Health: Join us for the next installment in our Equity Series as we talk with Nkenge Browner, organizing director with Mothering Justice; and Shanayl Reed, a doula and community health worker with Henry Ford Hospital.

Nov. 18: Michigan Energy Assistance Program: Join us for a conversation around options for utility assistance, as well as advice for those looking to apply.

Nov. 11: Veterans’ Resources: Ryan Engle, partnership coordinator with the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency, joins us for this Veterans Day discussion on benefits and resources available to Michigan veterans.

Oct. 28 – Election Protection: Melanie McElroy with the nonpartisan civic engagement organization Michigan Voice discusses voters’ rights and Election Day safety.

Oct. 21 – Futures for Frontliners: Ava Attari, data & policy fellow for the University of Michigan’s Youth Policy Lab, placed with Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity; and Erica Luce, manager, Office of Adult Education, Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity – Workforce Development join us to discuss this new program for frontline workers in Michigan.
Click here to view/download presentation slides
Questions? Email MiStudentAid@michigan.gov for questions about the community college path; LEO-AdultEd@Michigan.gov for the high school completion path

Oct. 14 – Helping Children Cope with Stress: Dr. Christopher Trentacosta, associate professor in psychology at Wayne State University, joins us to discuss how we can help our children through the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Oct. 7: – Equity in Education Funding: Mary Grech, senior data and policy analyst with Education Trust Midwest, joins us for this continuation in our series of discussions around equity and inclusion.

Sept. 30: A Conversation with the Michigan Women’s Commission: Shannon Garrett, chief strategy officer for the Michigan Women’s Commission, discusses gender equity, child care and more.

Sept. 23: Be Counted Michigan – A Virtual Town Hall Census 2020: Joan Gustafson, external affairs officer with the Michigan Nonprofit Association, discusses the importance of being counted in the 2020 census.

Sept. 16: Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities with Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II
As part of United Way for Southeastern Michigan’s increased focus on issues of diversity, equity and inclusion, we were proud to welcome Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist to our Sept. 16 virtual town hall. This was the first in a series of equity-focused town halls to take place once a month as a part of the weekly virtual town hall schedule. The lieutenant governor discussed the work of the Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities, which he chairs.

Sept. 9: Resources for Parents and Students with Disabilities – A Back to School Virtual Town Hall with Michelle Driscoll, policy coordinator for Michigan Alliance for Families

Aug. 26: Connect4Care Kids – A new resource for families in Detroit seeking child care, featuring United Way staff Jeff Miles, senior director, Center for Early Childhood Excellence, and Delonda McCullum, Virtual Children’s Health Program/Connect4Care specialist, Social Innovation Fund

Aug. 19: Closing the Digital Divide – A Virtual Town Hall with Connect 313 featuring Joshua Edmonds, Director of Digital Inclusion for the City of Detroit

July 31: Discover Your Spark – a Virtual Town Hall on Out-of-School Programs for Youth with Sara Plachta Elliott, executive director of the Youth Development Resource Center

July 22: Voting Safely in 2020 – a Virtual Town Hall with Assistant Secretary of State Heaster Wheeler

July 1: Supports for Older Adults with Area Agency on Aging 1-B

June 24: Getting Back to Work with Michigan Works!

June 16: Oakland County COVID-19 response

June 10: Be Counted: 2020 Census

June 5: Child Care

May 27: Mental Health

May 22: Stimulus Payment and Filing Your Taxes

Download virtual VITA tax assistance information

May 20: Utility and Water Assistance

May 15: Accessing Food Assistance

May 8: Unemployment Insurance

Read unemployment FAQs