In a previous post, we looked at social enterprises in Wisconsin. In this article, we’ve featured 10 top social enterprises in Michigan. Scroll down to learn about them.
Founded in 2009 by Rebecca Smith, Better Life Bags is a social enterprise located in Hamtramck, Michigan. This dedicated team of women from under-resourced neighborhoods in the area meticulously hand cut and sew each custom order created in their shop.
Better Life Bags gives back to its community by providing employment opportunities for women residing in low-income areas. By offering fair wages and fostering a supportive work environment, this organization uplifts the lives of its employees while delivering high-quality products to its customers.
Get in touch with Better Life Bags for more information about their mission.
Higher Grounds in Traverse City, Michigan, was founded in 2001 by Chris and Jody Treter. This social enterprise purchases coffee beans using a model built on the idea of improving sustainability. They donate a percentage of their profits back into the same communities where they purchase coffee beans, as well as local non-profits.
Funds are raised through the sale of organic coffee ingredients and prepared coffee drinks at their coffee bar. Even the location of the coffee bar benefits the community, as it is located in the Village at Grand Traverse Commons, a large historic preservation known for its adaptive reuse efforts meant to reclaim and revitalize the area.
Find Higher Grounds on their website.
Anna Warner Mayes established The Lipstick Journey in 2015. This Ann Arbor, Michigan, venture sells lipsticks and beauty products. This unique organization pledges to donate a portion of its proceeds to organizations dedicated to supporting individuals affected by cancer.
Each lipstick customers purchase comes with an option to donate a complimentary lipstick to someone who is bravely fighting or triumphing over cancer. For those customer who don’t have a recipient in mind, the value of the lipstick will be donated to a cancer nonprofit instead.
Pay a visit to The Lipstick Journey’s website to get involved.
In 2005, Amanda and her husband Brad founded the Crosshatch Center for Art & Ecology (CCAE) in Bellaire, Michigan, as a way of building up their community through efforts that benefit nature and the people who inhabit it. They engage citizens by providing outlets to connect through music, art, storytelling, meals, and workshops for careers rooted in the natural environment.
CCAE raises funds through donations and partnerships from individuals and organizations who wish to invest in the community. They accept donations in any form that can be used to further their mission, whether financial or physical goods such as stock, space, or abilities.
Find out more about what they do.
Established in 2015 by Cindy Eggleton, Brilliant Detroit in Detroit, Michigan, is dedicated to enhancing the lives of families and children. They provide neighborhood hubs where families can access valuable support, resources, and educational programs. With a focus on children aged 0-8, Brilliant Detroit aims to improve school readiness and overall family well-being.
Brilliant Detroit sustains its operations through a combination of grants, donations, and partnerships. Collaborating with over 50 partners, they ensure that families and children have the necessary tools and resources for school readiness, health, and stability in a nurturing environment.
Get involved by visiting their website.
The Detroit Water Ice Factory is an initiative of SAY (Super All Year) Detroit, founded by author and journalist Mitch Albom in 2006. This Detroit-based philanthropic effort helps provide a wide range of resources to individuals across different age groups and backgrounds.
Their stores and pop-ups sell frozen desserts, gourmet popcorn, and other products to raise funds. Many servers at their locations are members of partner youth programs, further emphasizing the organization’s commitment to empowering the local community. Both the stores and pop-up locations ensure that 100% of their profits are channeled toward charitable endeavors.
Visit one of their stores to join the movement.
The Green Garage in Detroit, Michigan was started by Peggy and Tom Brennan in 2005. Motivated to raise awareness about reducing environmental impact, the concept of a commercial space dedicated to implementing sustainability principles was born.
The Green Garage sustains itself through revenue generated from coworking space memberships and event rentals. Their focus lies in providing a sustainable coworking environment that promotes collaboration and environmentally friendly business practices. By offering a shared workspace, they cultivate a sense of community while empowering individuals and businesses to reduce their carbon footprint.
Visit the Green Garage on Twitter to keep up with the latest news.
8. Rebel Nell
Established in 2014 in Detroit by Rebel Nell, this purpose-driven enterprise aims to empower women facing employment barriers. They accomplish this mission by repurposing meaningful materials into wearable art that they sell as statement jewelry to commemorate significant moments in their customers’ lives.
Their comprehensive training program, known as The Rebel Nell Training Program, equips women with the skills necessary for careers in jewelry-making, manufacturing, and entrepreneurship. Through this program, they provide support and empowerment to women, enabling them to overcome obstacles and attain economic stability.
Check out what Rebel Nell has to offer.
Founded in 2012 by Kris Spaulding, Michigan Farm to Freezer is based in Traverse City, Michigan. With a mission to enhance access to the abundant resources of the region, this socially conscious entity prioritizes unmatched quality while working toward minimizing waste and providing support to local farmers across the state.
Michigan Farm to Freezer generates revenue by offering a range of frozen fruits and vegetables sourced locally for sale. Through partnerships with nearby farms, they reduce food waste while ensuring the year-round availability of nutritious food options to residents, fostering a sustainable and inclusive food ecosystem in their community.
Contact Michigan Farm to discover more.
Founded by Jenny Brown, Everybody by Dutton Farm is based in Pontiac, Michigan. Their mission is to remove barriers to employment and community access for people with disabilities. This social enterprise hopes to help alleviate the problem of long-term unemployment and offer job skills to those who might not otherwise find a career path that meets their special needs.
This social enterprise creates and sells bath and body products that are natural and of high quality to consumers. They guarantee that for every $20 worth of purchases, at least one hour of work for a disabled adult will be provided.
Learn more about Everybody by Dutton Farm.