248546 Green Recovery in Detroit: Comparing Two Promising Efforts in the Early Stages

Monday, October 31, 2011: 1:42 PM

Paul Draus, PhD in Sociology , Behavioral Sciences, University of Michigan-Dearborn, Dearborn, MI
This presentation will compare two innovative efforts to combine “recovery”--the efforts of individuals with mental health and other challenges or disabilities to reclaim a sense of purpose and meaningful community involvement--with urban agriculture and community development initiatives to achieve holistic goals of sustainable or "green" recovery, at both the community as well as the individual level.

One effort, called Recovery Park, is centered in a distressed neighborhood located on the near East Side of Detroit, coordinated by Substance Abuse Rehabilitative Services (SHAR). The other project involves two linked efforts—the Promise Neighborhoods Initiative and the Green Recovery Project--both of which are coordinated through The Guidance Center, a major provider of community mental health, early childhood, juvenile justice and other human services in the Downriver area, just south of the city of Detroit. Both efforts are geographically-focused, and seek to address multiple linked issues simultaneously by concentrating resources within a specific area. Each effort also proposes to use food system interventions as a means to both enhance economic and physical health and to integrate marginalized populations within community contexts.

The presentation will provide overviews of each effort, including the history, goals and missions, as well as maps and data pertaining to each targeted area. Comparisons will be made, and contrasts drawn, between the strategies chosen by each group and the anticipated outcomes within the proposed lives of each project. First-hand observations and preliminary data concerning community impact will be included. Limitations and challenges will also be addressed.

Learning Areas:
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1) Discuss potential significance of two collaborative approaches to food-system-oriented community development in Detroit metropolitan region. 2) Compare the two approaches to each other and other cases from the existing literature.

Keywords: Community Development, Substance Abuse

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am involved a researcher and a board member with both of the projects that I will be discussing.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.