Detroit SOUP: Like Christmas in July

Another monthly event at Detroit SOUP, another magical evening. Though the night was a bit balmy, close to 200 people sat silently as we experienced the thoughtfulness of Detroiters as they shared what they thought would benefit the community. We experienced some modern dance from LaMarre and Dancers with a free jazz accompaniment by the James Cornish Ensemble. The big winner of the evening was Food Field Solar Panels with $788.44. More information of our fine evening is detailed below.

• Urban farm off-grid solar installation 

The funding will be used to buy system components of a 1.5 kw solar installation at Food Field in Midtown. The installation will be used as a training tool for aspiring solar installers and designers that are part of Green Economy Leadership Training in Highland Park. The unique partnership will help Food Field become completely independent from the power grid, while also training community members in solar photovoltaic technology. Contact: Brandon Knight.

• Detroit School of Music
Detroit School of Music offers individual music lessons to anyone interested - that means children age 5 through adults. I have taught music in Detroit schools for 5 years, and I have seen over and over again that music is very much valued and appreciated in the community. Yet music programs in schools are lean (if they still exist at all) and once out of school, adults often have no avenue to learn a new musical skill should they want to. It is my goal to have DSM fill that music education void.

Lessons are being offered in piano, flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, and guitar. But string instruments, voice, and drums will be added to this mix as soon as possible. The bigger picture involves expanding to offer group classes at a cheaper rate, music workshops for senior citizens, music and movement classes for toddlers and their parents, rock band classes. If you're interested in any of the above send DSM's Carole Hoste an email here.

• Corktown Yoga Co-op

Corktown Yoga Co-op will be a community yoga center, also known as donation-based yoga. What that means is there is a suggested donation of $10 per class. However, if you can’t afford even a dollar, you are still more than welcome to attend. We will be using the gymnasium inside Pony Ride and will offer approximately five classes per day. The funds will be used for yoga mats, space heaters, an iPod doc and insulation to sound proof the room.

Contacts: Corinne Rice and Beth James.

• Give Merit's Fate Program

Fate is facilitated by the nonprofit organization, Give Merit. The mission of the program is to provide sufficient resources and opportunities for underserved youth to embrace their education and become world-class citizens. It is our philosophy that for a student to embrace education and become a world-class citizen, an impactful program must motivate them, and be built around the following guiding principles: academic enrichment, social & cultural awareness, career development, and student mentorship.

Starting in ninth grade, and continuing through high school graduation, 20 Detroit high school students will visit Ann Arbor one Saturday a month (during the academic year) for a series of engaging and interactive workshops that complement school curriculum and provide real-life learning that apply to their personal goals. The money will be used toward the logistical details of our program. Transporting the students from their hometown high school to Ann Arbor is integral to the program’s execution. It is also one of the biggest costs of the program. Contact: Kuhu Saha.

Detroit SOUP is a micro granting dinner funding creative projects in Detroit. If you would like more information on a future dinners or donating to our project go to Detroit SOUP, or our Facebook or Twitter pages.

Our next dinner will be on Aug. 3, when we partner with TechTown for a special Startup SOUP funding entrepreneurs. The winners will receive $1,500, donated by sponsors, Hennessey Capital and Huntington Bank, the money raised at the door ($5 a person) and five workshop vouchers from TechTown, expires August 2013. To RSVP go to Eventbrite.

Want to know more about Amy Kaherl? Read this profile in Urban Innovation Exchange.