Students Engaged Monthly


Total Service Hours

buildOn is empowering Detroit youth to transform their schools, neighborhoods and city by serving those most in need.

Detroit is on the rise, but continues to have among the highest poverty rates and lowest graduation rates in the United States. But buildOn students in Detroit are working hard to change the outlook for their city. By cooking meals at homeless shelters and soup kitchens, tutoring and mentoring young younger children, and cleaning up vacant lots and homes, buildOn students are serving the most vulnerable in their neighborhoods.

Detroit Service Impact

buildOn students are transforming their city through service.

Meet some of the Detroit students we're empowering to serve.

  • “If it wasn’t for buildOn, I don’t think I would even have a chance at getting into college.”

    Carla Underwood – Detroit, MI
    Carla's Service Story

  • “I wanted to do service to spread more positive actions and influence my community… I feel like through buildOn I found that circle of positivity that I’ve been looking for.”

    Taju Williams – Osborn College Preparatory Academy

  • “Urban teens believe that we can make a difference here at home and in developing countries. buildOn helps us realize that we are not that different from suburban teens or from someone thousands of miles away. We learn to love ourselves and our community, and to never give up even when all odds are against us.”

    Rayia Gaddy, buildOn Alum

Where we work in Detroit

We’re making a difference in some of Detroit’s most challenged high schools:

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How You Can Help

Empower buildOn students to serve the Detroit community

Serve with Us in Detroit

buildOn provides a variety fully immersive experiences that allow your organization to mentor and serve with Detroit youth, share your skills, and make a positive impact in your community.

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Donate to Detroit Programs

Your donation can help a Detroit student become a leader in his urban community. A gift of just $36 provides a Detroit student with a week of impactful buildOn Service Learning Programs.

Learn more

Learn more about our programs
Contact Michael Matthis
Program Director, Detroit
Volunteer or support our programs
Contact Ryan Nishimoto
Community Engagement Manager, Midwest

Join Us