LANSING, Mich. — “Mikey 23 Foundation is all about teaching our kids how to work with their hands,” said Michael McKissic.
McKissic started the organization back in 2015 in honor of his son Mikey, who was killed by senseless gun violence at the age of 23.
“He was a giving person, and it was just simple to start this organization in his name and to help others,” McKissic said.
Each year, around 120 young adults go through the program, and the team works on about five to seven homes in that year.
“They learn how to install furnace, they learn how to do siding, they learn how work with power tools and stuff like that,” McKissic said.
But aside from the trade skills, the foundation puts mentor ship at the forefront.
“I like working with my hands, but it's having the kids around, seeing, and I could motivate them to work with their hands, and they can have almost anything they want,” said Mikey 23 Foundation mentor Corey Morris.
But now, the Mikey 23 Foundation will have more help to make a difference in more young lives. Recently, the organization received a $100,000 grant from the United States Conference of Mayors. McKissic said the money will be used to hire more experienced staff to help him train the young adults.
McKissic said his level of gratitude is through the roof.
“To me, it just brings tears to my eyes because they’re not embracing just the foundation, but they’re embracing my son’s legacy,” he said.