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It’s Official: FSH Expands to Detroit!

10.22.2016 / Events, Skating

detroitfreepress-front-page-pdf-1It was announced on Friday, November 18th at Detroit’s famous holiday tree lighting ceremony in Campus Martius Park, that Figure Skating in Harlem is expanding to Detroit!  Launched with an exciting performance by Olympic Champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White, the crowd embraced our new Figure Skating in Detroit initiative which will provide access to figure skating, educational support and leadership development to hundreds of girls.

Detroit is the first city selected in a planned national expansion. Coverage of the event was front page news in Detroit and made headlines across the country.

Figure Skating in Detroit, through a strategic partnership with the resources and expertise of the non-profit Michigan Women’s Foundation, will empower participants through comprehensive academics and education emphasizing STEM curriculum, healthy lifestyle resources, entrepreneurship, leadership and social skills training and instruction on critical thinking and problem solving.

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Also supporting FSD’s implementation is an Advisory Council, including: chairperson Dr. Akosua Barthwell Evans, founder img_2086
and CEO of The Barthwell Group, vice chairs Jerod Swallow, former Olympian and managing director of Detroit Skating Club, and Ellen Hill Zeringue, Vice President of marketing for the Detroit Tigers. The Detroit Department of Parks and Recreation also is a strategic partner.
“Figure Skating in Detroit is designed to help young girls build a foundation on ice…a place and a program where young women can realize their full potential through access to information, resources and experiences that may otherwise be out of reach,” said Williams.  “This is a youth development opportunity for Detroit’s young women, wrapped around the fun, artistry and discipline of figure skating.”

In its inaugural year, FSD, which will be supported through FSH and private fundraising, plans to serve 300 Detroit girls ages six to 15 through special community workshops, summer camps, skating shows and events and ICE (I Can Excel), a signature after-school program where girls will receive four-to-six afternoons weekly of skating instruction and off-ice conditioning and educational services at the Jack Adams Ice Arena at the Adams Butzel Complex in northwest Detroit. 

img_2089“For 20 years, Figure Skating in Harlem has helped hundreds of girls each year in New York City’s most under-resourced
neighborhoods graduate from high school and continue on to college, get access to fitness and health opportunities, grow in confidence, as well as develop crucial teamwork and leadership skills,” said Cohen.  “Having proved that our powerful trifecta of skating, education and leadership positively impacts girls’ lives, we are so thrilled to be expanding this innovative youth development model to a great city like Detroit.”

To participate, interested girls must be Detroit residents.  All participating girls and her parent or guardian will be interviewed prior to acceptance to the program, to ensure they can fulfill the time requirements and rigorous schedule. Upon acceptance, girls and their parents will sign a contract outlining their expectations and making a commitment to FSD’s mission.  FSD will provide all girls with proper equipment (skates, blade covers and bags) and attire (warm-up suits, sweatshirts and show costumes).
meryl-charlie12In addition to utilizing Jack Adams Ice Arena to house FSD’s educational and skating instruction, the program also will use the ice rinks and facilities at Campus Martius and the Detroit Skating Club in Bloomfield Twp., and is looking forward to the completion of the new Little Caesars Arena for potential partnership opportunities.

“The introduction of Figure Skating in Detroit is a huge win for Detroit girls…and when Detroit’s young people win, the entire community and region reap the benefits,” said Carolyn Cassin, president and CEO of MWF.  “With our combined efforts, taking what we do best at Michigan Women’s Foundation in terms of shaping young women into future leaders, and aligning that with the innovative FSD model, these young women will have what it takes to go far…whether it’s in the classroom, boardroom or ice rink.”

Corporations and other potential partners and sponsors interested in supporting FSD and its mission are asked to contact Geneva Williams , 313.962.1920.

To refer a student to the Detroit program, click here!
To volunteer with Figure Skating in Detroit, click here!
For more information, click here!

About Figure Skating in Detroit
Figure Skating in Detroit (FSD), a youth development program for Detroit girls, is the first in a planned national expansion of the renowned Figure Skating in Harlem model, the only organization in the world for girls of color that combines the life-transforming power of education with access to the artistic discipline of figure skating.  FSD, through a strategic partnership with the resources and expertise of the non-profit Michigan Women’s Foundation, empowers girls through on-ice instruction and comprehensive academics and education emphasizing STEM curriculum, healthy lifestyle resources, entrepreneurship, leadership and social skills training and instruction on critical thinking and problem solving. For more information, visit the Detroit section at www.figureskatinginharlem.org


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