Feature Story Vonnie Woodrick 1

How redefining mental illness helps fight stigmas surrounding diagnosis and treatment

The stigmas that surround mental health diagnoses and treatment are often strong enough to keep those who live with these issues from speaking out or seeking help. One way of reducing mental health stigma is by redefining certain terms.

Feature Story GRCC partners with local municipalities — including road commissions in Muskegon and Kent counties — for Public Works Academy.

GRCC offering job training for municipal positions

GRCC partners with local municipalities — including road commissions in Muskegon and Kent counties — for Public Works Academy, providing skills for jobs serving communities.

Longform Dr. Sheila Marcus.

Michigan docs tackle youth mental health crisis with on-demand psychiatric support from U-M program

Michigan Child Collaborative Care helps primary care providers address their young patients' mental health by offering same-day phone consultations with psychiatrists, among other services.

Feature Story Kelli Nina Perkins and Bill Parrott on the road.

Creative Nomads: How letting go inspired our most creative year

Herrick District Library retired librarian Kelli Nina Perkins and husband Bill Parrott decided to hit the road during the pandemic. The Holland couple are now full-time nomads exploring the U.S. in their truck camper and sharing their stories on YouTube and Instagram as Outer Limits Open Road.

Feature Story Muskegon Luge and Adventure Sports Park  (Photo credit: MLASP)

Things to do in January: Winter sports, exhibits, downtown fun and celebrating MLK's legacy

January brings a fresh start to the new year and a fresh list of fun, exciting things to do along the Lakeshore. This list of Ottawa, Allegan, and Muskegon county events for residents and visitors alike includes options for everyone, regardless of age, ability, or interest.

Longform Edward Lofton and his mother Joanna Lofton, community resource specialist at the Autism Alliance of Michigan. Edward lives with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and, like many people with ASD, has faced unique challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Michigan organizations help people living with autism reduce risks of COVID-19

COVID-19 has inflicted a disproportionate burden on many groups, but one of the least recognized is people living with autism spectrum disorder.

Feature Story Bridge St

Letter from the editor: Reflecting on 2021 as we begin navigating the new year

While 2021 brought its challenges, community members and organizations continued to work together, support one another and share stories of resilience. Take a look back with us at some of the most impactful stories of 2021.

Longform Nurse stock

With COVID cases peaking, Michigan seeks solutions to health care worker shortage

Michigan health care leaders are advocating for investments to support staffing needs in hospitals, nursing facilities, emergency medical services, and workforce training programs.

Partner Content A new assessment conducted by the Gratiot-Isabella Regional Education Service District considered physical activity assets in Clare, such as this playscape at Shamrock Park.

Gratiot-Isabella Regional Education Service District promotes active, healthy communities

Using Michigan Fitness Foundation’s Promoting Active Communities assessment and tools, GIRESD staff are on their way to having a better understanding of the barriers to active living and finding solutions to overcome those barriers.

Partner Content The EUPISD LifeSPAN team collaborated with other area organizations to host a Color Run/Walk last August.

SNAP-Ed Eastern U.P. LifeSPAN team is helping to get the U.P. active

Eastern Upper Peninsula Intermediate School District staff have spearheaded numerous initiatives through the LifeSPAN program, which gives families the tools to lead all-around healthier lives. 

Feature Story LAUP received $20,000 to add a career coaching component to the ¡Más Adelante! program.

Women of Color Give distributes $40k to 5 groups

Women of Color Give awarded more than $40,000 to five local organizations that took part in the collective’s second annual Pitch Night in December. 

Longform Kevin Fischer.

Michigan prepares for long-term mental health effects of COVID-19

The pandemic's mental health impacts are expected to remain for the long term – and many of Michigan’s communities, mental health professionals, and researchers are already preparing to address them.

Feature Story Treetops Collective

Treetops Collective: Connecting New Americans to a welcoming community

Treetops Collective brands itself as a cross-cultural movement helping to create a more welcoming Grand Rapids community for New Americans. Through leadership and cohort programming, mental health access, language services and more, the nonprofit connects women and their families with local resources and organizations.

Feature Story Mitch and Johally Carlson pose with their children outside their new home. The family has a home of their own this holiday season with the help of Lakeshore Habitat for Humanity.

Home for the holidays: Habitat builder comes home to Habitat house

Mitch and Johally Carlson built hundreds of homes for other people, but when they needed a home of their own, the answer was closer than they might have thought.

Feature Story Jubilee Ministries Executive Director Steve Grose and Lakeshore Habitat for Humanity Executive Director Don Wilkinson speak to a crowd before a ceremonial groundbreaking at Park Vista Place, a joint project of the two, on East 40th Street in Holland.

More housing coming to West Michigan, still more needed

New housing projects underway now and coming soon will help alleviate some of the housing shortage in West Michigan, HousingNext's Ryan Kilpatrick says. But still more is needed to slow ever-increasing housing prices.

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Looking for news about the people and projects going on in Ottawa County, from Grand Haven to Holland, check out The Lakeshore.

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Growth & Innovation


Incubator kitchen & food retail space “first domino” in redeveloping Boston Square Together district

Ramped-up expungement program will help deserving Kent County residents gain a “clean slate”

Black, woman engineer addresses STEM at the roots

More Grand Rapids businesses now eligible for Small Business COVID Adaptation grants


JustAir puts air quality in residents’ hands while working to decrease health disparities

With a focus on community, Well Design creates website feature for fundraising with Mosby’s Popcorn

The City of GR purchases 35 bus shelters to support mobility and accessibility

Mel Trotter Ministries launches virtual kitchen to support its mission

Michigan native returns to open Grand Rapids School of Dance

Latino Outdoors encourages Latinx community to get outdoors and reclaim nature

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