Made in the Market

Opened in 2012 and located in the heart of Detroit’s Eastern Market District, STEP’s Made in the Market Program helps integrate individuals with a developmental disability or a mental illness into the community. Led by a licensed chef, the program educates the participants on a variety of healthy lifestyle topics, including proper eating habits, food prep and clean up. Each participant purchases items from local food and produce vendors, prepare a meal with these items,  and enjoy lunch while celebrating their achievement. Four days each week, adults with developmental disabilities head to Eastern Market for a day full of
planning menus, shopping for fresh ingredients, cooking and enjoying a meal together.
For some of these adults, they are learning about nutrition and cooking to prepare them for a career in
the food industry. For others, they just enjoy cooking, the company and eating.

Art In The Market

STEP has installed an Art Education program to service five unique locations including the Made In the Market studio/gallery location in Detroit’s Eastern Market. The program goal is to improve communication skills for the consumers to improve the quality of their lives and their potential for productive work skills. The program fosters independence by acknowledging
accomplishment, practicing motor skills, developing critical thinking while learning and adhering to
process. The program puts a great deal of focus on learning the fundamentals of communication through
art: color theory, shape, pattern, perspective and content. As our program matures we are introducing
concepts of craftsmanship, the pride of complete ideas, as well as, admiration for the accomplishment
of others. The weekly program offers a chance for young artists to experience self-expression and also work in a
structure that will give them the opportunity to exhibit and possibly profit from their work.


The Downriver Employment and Activity Milestones (DREAM), is a community activity and volunteer program for developmentally disabled adults. The object of the program is to give individuals the opportunity to not only access their community, but to become involved. Each individual has the opportunity to choose what they wish to experience on a daily basis. This can range from community inclusion to volunteering and investigating the types of employment in their community. Participants are
not only encouraged to do activities in their community, but to engage the public at large. The DREAM program promotes life and social skills through various community activities such as bowling, Wally Ball, exploring local parks,
fit club, library access and special events. DREAM volunteers can also be found at
Gleaners Food Bank, Meals on Wheels, local churches and animal rescues.

Volunteer Sites

STEP is involved in bringing clients to a number of volunteer sites for activities meant to better their community as a whole. These places vary from The Light House Mission, Wayne Public Library, Meals on Wheels, St. Vincent de Paul, Belleville Library, Focus Hope, and more. The tasks performed in each of these places can vary, but it is always with the goal of creating a personal connection between people and the communities that they live and work in.