project leader
Shari W
2990 W. Grand Blvd, Suite 2
(Detroit, MI)
latest update rss
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the project

The Lots to Maintain campaign will raise funds to support Detroit residents and groups that have utilized the Detroit Future City Field Guide to Working with Lots to transform vacant lots in their community. The Field Guide is an online tool designed to educate residents and groups from around the globe about reclaiming and transforming vacant land from a liability to an asset. While groups were provided an initial seed grant to implement the lot designs, we want to raise money to ensure that groups can sustain the transformation of their lot and further our goal to improve stormwater management in the city of Detroit. 

By supporting this campaign, you will be helping DFC build a maintenance program that will support grassroots groups in their efforts to reduce and eliminate blight in their community. increase and strengthen community pride, and obtain resources to maintain their lots. 

the steps

Once we raise the funds needed to kick off this project, DFC plans to soft launch the maintenance program and make the application avaialbe to the first cohort of mini grant winners. The full launch will begin in the winter of 2018 and be available to community members that have either installed a lot design from the field guide or implmented a green infrastructure project that meets certain criteria around stromwater managment.


If anyone wants to write a check, they can follow these steps!

1. Write the check out to: ioby

2. In the memo section of the check, please include the name of the campaign: Lots to Maintain

3. Mail the check to:

PO Box 4668 #74253
New York, NY, 10163-4668

4. Lastly, please include your email address so that you can recieve a receipt via email of your tax-deductible donation. 


why we're doing it

When Detroiters reflect on what their community meant to them 15-20 years ago, they often think of communities filled with families, children, neighbors, and homes on each block. A village is often described with pride and dignity for the place they called home. Today, with decreased population and abandoned homes, the pride within each community is quickly being stripped away from residents, leaving their community with blight and vacancy. Homes that people once connected with, are no longer standing, leaving open space and opportunity to make those spaces a place for people to reconnect. This moment is a chance for Detroit residents to cultivate a green culture shift that utilizes this vacant land in a way that is more productive and sustainable.

In response to the need to help cultivate a green culture shift, DFC launched the Field Guide to Working with Lots, in 2015, as a resource for community groups to transform vacant land in their community to a place that would enhance community pride, add beauty, and improve stormwater management.  Simultaneously, we launched the Working with Lots Mini-Grant program which was geared to accelerating implementation of the Field Guide by offering funds to grassroots groups and businesses.

Being resilient and dynamic, Detroiters responded quickly to this opportunity to take their neighborhoods back and reestablish a sense of pride and dignity that once existed. Residents were looking to commemorate the history of their blocks, teach youth about green infrastructure, create spaces for residents to meet one another, and build stronger relationships within their neighborhoods. With more than 60 applicants to the mini grant program, DFC was able to award 15 groups in the first year, and an additional 10 the following year with funds to make their dreams a reality. 

Further accelerating our work, we also collaborated with several community organizations that were interested in installing a lot design, increasing the impact of the Field Guide to more than 35 transformed lots in the city of Detroit.

Now, after two years of the Field Guides release, we are learning how much of a challenge it is to maintain these projects. Some of the stories we’ve heard include groups mentioning how they are lugging large buckets of water by hand and sometimes car for distances up to 5 blocks to ensure their plants have the water they need. We are also learning that groups are lacking resources to ensuring their lot is sustainable, thus making it hard to keep some installations from once again becoming blighted.

We want to ensure that communities can continue to transform their communities for the greater good. This campaign seeks to raise funds that will allow DFC to institute a maintenance program, which will provide funds to groups that are lacking the resources they need to sustain their lot design. 


2nd disbursement (4.11.18):

RAISED = $1,000.00
less ioby Platform Fee  waived
less ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $29.13

Disbursed budget (11.7.17):

RAISED = $8,520.00
 less ioby Platform Fee  $35.00
less ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $247.14

Original budget:

Project Subtotal =  $10,000
ioby Platform Fee  $35
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $300
Total to raise on ioby = $10,335



Sorry, but this project doesn't have any updates yet.


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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