Our Care Force team kicked off October with more than 85 team members giving over 500 hours volunteering with Life Remodeled! The event took place in the Cooley High School neighborhood where the vacant school resides.  

“We’ve participated in this six-day event that I’ve been a part of for nearly 5 years,” said Jenita Caddell, DTE Gas. “We love giving back to the communities that we serve. The work that we do not only impact the lives of the people we serve but helps to uplift the community as a whole. This year was very impactful to a historic area and we’re all very proud to have been a part of this six-day project.”  

DTE Gas has consistently participated in this event for nearly four years with employees from service centers across southeast Michigan who use heavy machinery and equipment to haul away trash and blight to dumpsters as they bring their best energy to serve the community. This year, the Coolidge Service Center, one of our outstanding gas facilities, went above and beyond to provide storage for the nonprofit’s equipment trailers since our facility is located close to the volunteer site.  

Corporate volunteers from across the enterprise were also involved. One of the teams on site was our HR team. This group’s effort to volunteer with Life Remodeled was led by Chris John, HR manager, whose connection to the nonprofit stems from his grandfather. 

“You could really see the difference in the community you were making, and it was very apparent how the local residents really appreciated it,” said Chris. “It was a great event, and I am really happy I did it. It was hard work, but it was worth it.” 


Life Remodeled incredible mission 

Life Remodeled focuses on the intentional and equitable revitalization of Detroit neighborhoods distinguished by their significant need and radical hope. The nonprofit repurposes vacant school buildings into one-stop hubs of opportunity for entire families to thrive.  

Volunteers participated in a variety of tasks including the following.  

  • Mowing the lawns of occupied houses – primarily elderly neighbors – in addition to vacant lots 
  • Installing 100 Ring doorbells that face the vacant building (which were donated by Amazon) 
  • Potting 2,000 mums to be festive, and add fall spirit to the neighborhood 
  • Removing blight 
  • Clearing yard debris 
  • Collecting trash 


Commitment to caring 

Our company’s caring service key encourages all employees to have a service mindset and strong emotional connection to serving our customers, communities and each other, which was the crux of this very special project. 

“We can’t wait to see how the Life Remodeled vision comes to life for the former Cooley Highschool since we are a neighbor and ally in this project,” said Jay Williams, DTE Energy. ”I’m very proud to work for a company that comes together across many teams to make a difference.” 

Learn more about our commitment to volunteerism!