Expanding Horizons Events

What happens when you have a CEO of a nonprofit, NFL Running back, and 80 high school juniors and seniors in one room? Magic! Absolute magic!

On January 15, we hosted our 2019 Leadership Series which featured CEO and Co-Founder of Life Remodeled, Chris Lambert, and NFL Running back, Joique Bell. The event was held at the Durfee Innovation Center and the focus was “Pursuing Passions.” Both gentlemen had the floor for an hour to speak to 80 Mumford high schools students. They each chose to speak with the students instead.

Lambert discussed his passion for bettering the community, and he included a PowerPoint that gave powerful visuals. Bell discussed his passion for football, but focused more on the journey to succeed in life. Each individual gave the students an opportunity to ask questions, and the students didn’t hold back. One young man stood up and said “I understand that we should stay motivated, I get that. But how do we stay motivated when our heat is off and we don’t know where our next meal is coming from?” The room was silenced. Bell answered by telling a personal story from his childhood, followed by a statement that left the young man fulfilled. He said “I can tell you this. There wasn’t a workout or practice in the NFL that was more difficult than the things I experienced at home, as a child. If you can persevere despite the hardships, nothing will be impossible going forward.”

That question and answer was a true testament to the impact of the Leadership Series. Students left feeling inspired, and the guest left feeling accomplished. Everyone in attendance left feeling energized and motivated to do more.

Leadership Series Featuring CEO and Co-Founder of Life Remodeled, Chris Lambert, and NFL Running back, Joique Bell

Hyundai Mobis opens up a whole new world to Beyond Basics students

Last school year Hyundai MOBIS donated more than 500 safety equipped umbrellas to Beyond Basics students at Burton Elementary and Sampson Webber Leadership academy. The umbrellas had reflectors for night use, included a whistle in case of danger, and were made see-through so the children’s vision wasn’t impaired. The thoughtfulness behind the umbrella project put smiles on many young faces!

It didn’t surprise us when Lisa Bastian, head of Human Resources from Hyundai Mobis, reached out to us with the idea of teaching fourth graders how to build solar cars at our Family Literacy Center. On October 24, 2018, members from Hyundai Mobis Headquarters and their partners flew in from Korea for the first time ever, to witness 10 of their top engineers teach 40 Durfee Elementary students what it meant to be an engineer! The students asked questions during the training video, and had a great time working with the engineers when it was time to start building! After the children built the solar cars, the group headed outside to use the sunlight as energy, which allowed everyone’s car to drive.

These type of literacy enrichment activities open up a new world to our children and help them build vocabulary and comprehension. This exposure will impact their lives forever! Thank you Hyundai Mobis! We look forward to partnering in the near future to bring this activity to more of our students!

Thank you to the media for covering this wonderful enrichment activity!

Hyundai activity hits Corp! Magazine break room

WDIV Local 4 – Nonprofit brightens Detroit 4th graders future, teaches engineering, literacy

The University of Iowa Students Volunteer With Beyond Basics

The University of Iowa has been volunteering with Beyond Basics for the past three years. Every year, a group of students decide to take an “alternative spring break” and donate their time to helping others instead of taking time for themselves.


The students enjoy typing up the stories for the kids in our programs, helping read to the kids with reading buddies, and sorting books that were donated from our book drive. Beyond Basics is grateful for The University of Iowa students for taking the time to continuously support our organization and help the kids in our programs. We are excited to keep working with the student volunteers for next year!

Leadership Day at Baker College of Auburn Hills

Baker College of Auburn Hills hosted a Leadership Day with Beyond Basics for 80 9th grade Mumford High School students. There were three community leaders who spoke during the event at Baker College. Those speakers included Henry Ford III, Marketing Manager for Ford Performance, Ford Motor Company; Jack Aronson, Founder of Garden Fresh Gourmet and Clean Planet Foods; and Cleamon Moorer Jr., DBA, Dean of the College of Business, Baker College.

The Leadership Day gave students the opportunity to learn from three successful community leaders. The speakers discussed the importance of personal goals and professional skill needed for the workplace that could help shape each students’ future. The speakers each demonstrated the importance of how literacy in high schools can set the students up for a successful future and life.

Coat Drive

Beyond Basics held our annual coat drive. There were over 500 coats distributed to students in Metropolitan Detroit. If these coats were not provided, the students in Detroit would have been without coats this winter. Thank you to our corporate partners: Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer & Weiss; Detroit Pencil Company; UHY LLP; Pearl Cleaners; Freudenberg; and Monroe. Thank you to all additional donors for helping to keep the students in Detroit warm this winter and for putting smiles on their faces.

Thank you to all our corporate sponsors for their participation in our Annual Coat Drive!

UHY Art With The Masters At Burton

The volunteers at UHY participated in the Art with the Masters program with students from the Beyond Basics programs. The volunteers helped the students create their artwork.