Monday, August 12, 2013

Living a Life of Service

Some people like to refer to volunteers as everyday heroes. President Bill Clinton said, "Volunteering is an act of heroism on a grand scale." As far back as the 1800s, King George IV said "The highest of distinctions is service to others."

For most volunteers, this is no search for distinction or kudos. This is a calling. We do this because we love people. We do this to put a smile on the face of others.

Luckily, scientists say that we're also helping ourselves when we volunteer. Mark Snyder, a psychologist at the Center for the Study of Individual and Society and the University of Minnesota says that "people who volunteer tend to have higher self-esteem, psychological well-being, and happiness."

As a volunteer, I think I can agree with that. I absolutely love the feeling of donating my time for the benefit of others. Most people who have volunteered know this feeling.

This past July, I ended my volunteering time at Sunrise Senior Living in Shelby Township. I spent 4 years as the bingo caller every Saturday. Please find my open letter to my friends at Sunrise below. I hope it will inspire you to take a small time out of your day to do good.

Dear Sunrise Family,
Words can’t express my boundless gratitude for the unexpected cake, card, & gas credit. I was left speechless by your generosity and thoughtfulness – I thought I was just coming for regular bingo on my last day!

Volunteering for the past four years has been one of the best experiences I’ve had in my life. Ever since I was seven years old I have always had a passion for spending time with the elderly. Just past my seventh birthday, I spent three months volunteering at the Baptist Manor in Farmington Hills. It was nothing like Sunrise, however. During my time at Sunrise I realized that volunteering becomes a powerful experience. I learned a lot about myself through the residents – characteristics like being caring, patient, and sincere. As Mohandas Gandhi once said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

Because my grandparents died before I was born, coming to Sunrise was like visiting grandma & grandpa each week. I was so lucky to have dozens of ‘grandparents’ that would ask me how I was doing, how school was going, and what new assignment I was up to.

When I think of all the wonderful memories we have shared together, I find myself reminiscing of some hilarious, yet meaningful moments – moments I will never forget. The staff & residents will always have a place in my heart forever.

Although I am excited to continue to follow my dream in journalism, I’m also saddened to leave my Sunrise family. I will definitely be back to visit! I hope this message will be shared with the regular bingo participants.

With Love,

Charlie Kadado

Thursday, July 25, 2013

2013 Detroit Election: Duggan vs. Dugeon

By Charlie Kadado

Meet Mike Dugeon. That’s D-U-G-E-O-N. By day, he’s a barber at Big D’s Barber Shop on Livernois and 7 Mile. By night, he’s a write-in candidate for mayor of Detroit.

With the election just 11 days away, Dugeon could spoil fellow contender Mike Duggan’s chances of winning. Detroit voters must physically write and reasonably spell Duggan’s name on the ballot in order to vote for him.

City Clerk Janice Winfrey explains that voter intent to write-in a candidate is imperative, but will be difficult to evaluate in this upcoming election. For example, if Joe Smith is running for mayor and a voter instead writes, Jo Smith or Joseph Smith, the voter’s intent is taken into consideration while tallying votes.

Detroit director of elections, Daniel Baxter confirms that filing with the same name complicates the election process. Voters who write Mike Dugeon will now be voting for a 31-year old Detroit barber, not the former medical center CEO.

For Duggan’s opponents, this means a better chance for victory. Dugeon formally turned in his filing Thursday morning. Winfrey says anyone is eligible to be a write-in candidate, as long as they are a registered voter and have lived in Detroit for at least one year.

City election officials confirm that Dugeon is a registered voter, but he hasn’t been for very long. Dugeon registered to vote on July 12, 2012, but never bothered to head to the polls.

To view a sample ballot for the upcoming election, visit

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Bring on the Business: Meijer Opens in Detroit

By Charlie Kadado

During a VIP grand opening Wednesday, hundreds of local leaders celebrated the arrival of Detroit’s first Meijer Supercenter. The store will open Thursday on Eight Mile and Woodward, on the city’s northern border. This comes two months after the grocery-chain, Whole Foods, opened on Detroit’s midtown area.

Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and Wayne County Executive Bob Ficano were among those in attendance. Mayor Bing welcomed the Meijer representatives to Detroit, thanking them for the economic contribution they are providing for Detroit residents.

“(The opening) means new jobs, continued economic growth, and greater convenience for the residents of our city,” Bing said. “This project represents the future of Detroit.”

More than 550 jobs will be added as a result of the opening. As an added bonus, more than 6% of Meijer’s net profit will be donated to Detroit charitable organizations.

“This store represents a city experience our whole team wants to invest in and watch grow,” said store director Adrian Lewis, who interviewed more than 400 new employees.

Security is anticipated to be high at the new location. The Detroit Police Department says they will have continual presence at the supermarket.

The project is part of a new Gateway Marketplace renovation effort at the former Michigan State Fairgrounds. The Southfield based company is expected to bring in companies like Marshalls, Dots, Petco, Payless Shoes, and K&G Fashion to the plaza.

At 190,000 square-feet and 120,000 items in stock, Meijer will be the anchor store in the project.
“We are thrilled to offer the Meijer experience to our new neighbors,” Meijer co-chairman Doug Meijer said in a released statement. “There’s so much history and pride here, so many people who’ve lived their entire lives in the city of Detroit, that the opportunity to provide healthy living options and help encourage growth is something our company is grateful to be a part of.”

Meijer will also support Michigan small businesses by adding 55 Michigan-made grocery items in all stores statewide. These items include Bon-A-Rose marinara sauce from New Hudson, barbeque sauce from Let’z Eat Food in Waterford, pickled beets and peppers by Safie’s Pickles in Chesterfield, and Mediterranean foods by Teta Foods in Clinton Township.

Meijer, which is a Michigan-made business, operates 203 supercenters and grocery stores through Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Kentucky.  They have been in business since 1934.

Top 5 FREE Must-Have Business Apps

By Charlie Kadado

1.      SQUARE (Apple or Android, FREE):  Square is essentially your mobile register – who doesn’t like making money on the go? Simply order your free card reader (, download the app, and start accepting Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover credit cards. You can organize your products, set your own prices, and keep track of payments. Square takes 2.75% per swipe.

2.      EVERNOTE (Apple or Android, FREE): Have you ever come up with a last-minute idea and completely forget it a few hours later?  Evernote is absolutely perfect for on-the-go people. This app makes it easy to save your notes, archive them, and access them from your mobile device, phone, or computer. Forget pen & paper – simply pick up your phone, take a photo, type in your notes, and save a keyword or tag. Who knows – your idea might be worth something someday?

3.      DROPBOX (Apple or Android, FREE): Remember floppy disks? How about CDs? How about the ever-so convenient flash drive! Forget all this old tech talk. Dropbox allows users to access their account files from any device. But will Google Drive or SkyDrive surpass this up-and-coming new technology? After all, users are looking for two things: convenience and price.

4.      EXPENSIFY (Apple or Android, FREE): So, the boss wants to know how much you’ve spent on your recent trip? Organization just became a hundred times easier with this productivity app! Expensify allows you to scan and upload receipts from various business expenses and automatically send these files to your employers. You can even log your mileage (no more ‘overworked, underpaid’ so-called ‘business-trips)!

5.      BUMP (Apple or Android, FREE): Face-to-face interaction meets social networking with Bump. Forget printing traditional business cards and distributing them at events. Simply, ‘bump’ your phone with a fellow Bump user and trade contact information, photos, and files. 27 million people are ready to share their virtual business card with you – what are you waiting for?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

4 Metro Detroit Summer Events you can’t Miss

By Charlie Kadado

1.      Woodward Dream Cruise - August 17

Calling all car enthusiasts! Metro Detroit's automotive heritage is on display at the annual Woodward Dream Cruise in Oakland County. The cruise is the world's largest one-day event of classic cars. Over one million spectators and 40,000 special cars will make it to this year's show. Expect to see muscle cars, custom cars, street rods, and more. Learn more at

2.      Michigan Renaissance Festival - August 17 - September 29

Experience history with the recreation of a historic English village! More than 250,000 people will assemble in Holly, MI for the annual event, bringing together reenactments and performances dating back to the 16th century. Tickets are $20.95 for adults, $11.95 for children ages 5-12, $18.95 for seniors 65+ and students with a valid college ID. For the weekend schedules visit

3.      Detroit International Jazz Festival - August 30 - September 2

Now in its 34th year, the Detroit International Jazz Festival features live stages and over 100 acts, extending from Hart Plaza to Campus Martius Park. You can expect educational activities for all ages, a full fireworks show, and exclusive opportunities to meet world-renowned jazz artists. There is no admission fee. To learn more about the festival visit

4.      Arts Beats and Eats - August 30, September 2

After its 2009 move from Downtown Pontiac to Downtown Royal Oak, the Arts, Beats, & Eats has kept its family entertainment tradition continuing. Each year, more than 400,000 help bring a $39 million economic impact to the region. From local to national talent, Michigan-made to international foods, and a diverse assortment of fine arts, this is a Labor Day event you can't miss! Festival admission is $3 until 5pm Saturday, Sunday, & Monday and $5 after 5pm everyday. For the full event lineup, visit

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Thousands of kids gather on Belle Isle for Metro Detroit Youth Day

By Charlie Kadado

For the past 31 years, Metro Detroit Youth Day has welcomed young people for a day of fun, guidance, and positive encouragement. On Wednesday, despite scorching heat, thirty-four thousands kids participated in the event.

In 1980, a series of deadly confrontations between teens and business owners led Mayor Coleman Young to seek help from Ed Deeb, the President and CEO of the Michigan Food and Beverage Association.

Deeb was asked to calm ongoing disputes between businesses and the community. In 1981, he hosted the first Youth Day, which brought in only 1,100 kids.

“We were going to call it quits until someone said to give it one more try. Well the one more try meant 10,000 kids, so we kept it going,” Deeb said.

 Today, Detroit youngsters have been looking forward to coming each year.

“(Youth Day) keeps kids having fun and their minds off video games and TV,” says 9-year old Cree Williams, a student from Walker-Winter Elementary School in Westland.

Several special events were set-up for the youth, including an entertainment stage, dozens of games, and activities that promote healthy-living.

“We have all kinds of sports clinics: tennis, golf, football, basketball, martial arts. You name it, we’ve got it,” adds Deeb.

Dignitaries were also present to promote the positive message.

“If we do not change the trajectory of our young people’s lives, nothing we do today is going to have a major impact on them,” began Councilman James Tate. “We’re not going to see a big change in the city of Detroit until we change young people’s lives.”

Even after Youth Day ended, Ed Deeb still beamed from ear to ear, enthusiastic about another successful year.

"Our aim was to motivate kids to do the most good -- to inspire them. To go to college, finish, get your degree, come back to Detroit and try to make Detroit a better place."

To learn more information about Metro Detroit Youth Day visit