1355 Oakman Boulevard - Detroit - Michigan 48238

Promise FAQ's

What is the Generation of Promise Program?

The Promise Program is a cross-school district, multi-cultural, urban/suburban student leadership development program. Participating students meet initially at a weekend retreat in August and one full day per month from October through April to focus on the resources, leadership, and critical issues that influence the quality of life in Metropolitan Detroit. Session topics include education, volunteerism, racial/cultural diversity, economic development, and youth leadership issues.


What is the Mission of the Program?

The mission of the Generation of Promise Program is to build a community of young leaders who celebrate diversity and are dedicated to the elimination of discrimination in metropolitan Detroit. Our efforts are guided by the belief that building relationships among youth of many cultures and ethnicities results in stronger relationships, an appreciation of individual differences, and creates a valuable corps of future leaders.


How was the Program formed?

The Promise Program began as a cooperative effort formed by graduates of Leadership Detroit and Birmingham Public School Experiential Learning Center. The Promise Program was coordinated and administered by the Birmingham Public School Experiential Learning Center for nine years. The Program is now managed internally, while housed at Focus: HOPE, Detroit's leading civil rights and community development organization.


What is the relationship with Focus: HOPE?

During its early years, Generation of Promise was closely affiliated with the Birmingham Schools Experiential Learning Center and housed in Birmingham.  Twelve years ago, it relocated its offices to the campus of Focus: HOPE in Detroit, and in January 2012, deepened its relationship with Focus: HOPE by establishing itself as a subsidiary.  As such, Generation of Promise is now poised to better share expertise and leverage valuable cost savings with Focus: HOPE.  While maintaining its independent 501 (c)(3) status, Generation of Promise is also able to preserve its own identity and retain the committed leadership of its Board of Directors.


Why have a Promise Program?

In many respects, the Detroit metropolitan community is currently racially, economically and geographically polarized. The Promise Program is designed to increase positive interaction between city and suburban youth, encourage mutual respect, dispel stereotypes and misconceptions dividing the community, and foster a shared commitment to the advancement of the metropolitan area.


Who supervises each session?

Events are coordinated and ultimately supervised by the Program Director, with the assistance of eleven experienced and committed facilitators, comprised of teachers, diversity trainers, professionals and community volunteers. On each program day, students are divided into groups of 12, accompanied by two adult facilitators. Students meet at a host school the morning of each program day as an entire group and are divided into small groups to visit destinations in the community related to the topic of interest. Students are never without adult supervision.


What will the general procedure be for each session?

1.Students receive letters in mail three weeks prior to a program event that includes information regarding the day as well as directions and a map to the host school location.

2.Students meet at the designated host school at 7:45 am on each program day.

3.After meeting as an entire group, students are broken down into small groups of 12 and are lead by two adult facilitators on an agenda of community meetings and events, transported in a van.

4.Throughout the day, lunch is provided free to students as they travel to various destinations.

5.All students are returned to the host school and released from the program at 3:00 PM.

6.Students meet with the Program Director at school to debrief the experience later in the month and prepare for the next session.


What schools are participating?

Berkley High School

Birmingham Groves High School

Cass Technical High School

Cesar Chavez High School

Cranbrook Kingswood Upper School

Dearborn Fordson High School

Grosse Pointe South High School

Lake Orion High School

Loyola Academy

Renaissance High School

South Lake High School

Southfield/Lathrup High School

Warren Fitzgerald High School

University of Detroit Jesuit High School


What types of community experiences do we provide?

We believe that experiential training provides the most effective learning vehicle for this type of program, especially for high school students. Rather than have students lectured to, students participate in carefully planned, supervised experiences in the metropolitan community. For example, on cultural diversity day, participants visit a religious institution, an educational institution, a restaurant and a marketplace from one of five possible ethnic communities under the direction of a resource person from that specific ethnic or cultural group.


How can I get involved?

Depending on your level of connection to the program, there are many ways you can get involved. As a parent, we request that you keep in touch with you child and share in their experiences by regularly debriefing program events.


As interested community members, you can volunteer to assist with projects for the organization or donate to the program's fund. Please contact Amy Costello at amy.costello@focushope.edu for more information on getting involved.



Who funds the Promise Program?

The Generation of Promise survives exclusively on funding support provided by private and corporate foundations as well as a variety of private donors. To join this list of supporters, please click here.


A complete list of program donors can be found on our Support Promise page.

Copyright 2012 Generation of Promise.  All rights reserved.  A certified Section 501(c)(3) organization.