Urban Neighborhood Initiatives works with communities in urban neighborhoods

to build safe and thriving environments where people want to live, work, and play.

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UNI At A Glance

Our Passion

To make urban neighborhoods vital, healthy environments that strengthen individuals and support families.

Our Vision

We are inspired by a vision of community where people have hope, education is valued, families are strong, and opportunities abound.

Our Strategy

We target critical neighborhood needs often in collaboration with other area agencies making significant community investments, block clubs and educational and youth serving groups targeting the Springwells area. Accordingly, UNI addresses programmatic gaps to support a sustainable, vital community. Within the Springwells  community, UNI has the following programmatic goals:

  • Economic development through the creation of public assets, workforce development and enhancing the visibility of the community. 
  • Beautification through public art, green projects and community clean up. 
  • Fostering a culture which promotes education from early childhood through adulthood.
  • Enhancing housing through home upgrades and blight elimination.
  • Improving long term community safety.
  • Facilitating the growth of strong community based leadership among adults and youth. 
  • Improving health and well being through lifestyle services and community dialog. 

UNI named CEDAM's 2015 Community Economic Development Leader of the Year

  • UNI has undertaken significant public space development, including restoration of a historic chapel as a community center and the creation or restoration of five public parks and play-scapes 
  • UNI is invested in creating a higher education bound culture in their community and their youth apprenticeship program is one of the largest in Southwest Detroit
  • Community beautification is key to a neighborhood’s quality of life
  • Youth mural program has created one of the city’s densest collections of public art and ongoing resident-driven efforts against blight

Recent Events 

Heroes of the Neighborhood - May 20

A big shout out to all of our 2016 Heroes of the Neighborhood, and a thank you to everyone who helped us celebrate! 

Take a look at all of the photos from the event here

UNI selected for Kresge Grant! 

"Urban Neighborhood Initiatives will renovate a vacant building in Southwest Detroit to house community and youth development programs." read more...

We're excited to announce our selection as a recipient of the Kresge Innovative Projects: Detroit grant! What new exciting news for our Lawndale Center!

Christine Bell, our ED, says “This facility, the former Moose Lodge, will become an amazing resource for youth and safety work in our community. Work will start shortly. Look for the groundbreaking announcement coming soon.” 

Our 2015 video  produced by Michael Glinski and Andrew Stefanik of Iron Coast Detroit. 

View a WXYZ TV-Channel 7 feature on Southwest Rides, southwest Detroit's only full service bike shop and a UNI affiliate.