November 8, 2016
I grew up in a small town, in an area much different than the Westside; in fact, the next town over was known for having more pigs than people. Even so, when I first came to The Other Way as an intern in 2000, it didn’t take me long to fall in love with this community. It struck me in a way I wasn’t prepared for – I remember two things distinctly. First, the neighbors on the Westside were incredibly “authentic,” a polite way of saying they were brash and open and honest. That was refreshing […]
November 8, 2016
The Other Way is in the midst of hosting its fourth cohort of SpringGR students – business visionaries, entrepreneurs, and business owners looking to take their trade to the next level. Launched in 2014, SpringGR is an entrepreneurial training that provides training, mentoring, and networking opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs from neighborhoods with few opportunities to develop a thriving business. Program Director Alvin Gray explains that SpringGR “takes individuals from conception to launch and provides them with personal coaching and mentorship during the process and for up to two years after [graduation].” The Other Way is […]
October 31, 2016
October 4 was the perfect evening for kicking off a year of celebration in honor of our 50th Anniversary! Thank you to all who showed up – neighbors, donors, partners, staff, volunteers, board, and more. If you weren’t able to make it, don’t worry! We’re just getting started. Find out more about what’s happening during our 50th year here. Take a look at some photos from the event below. Thanks to Dreams by Bella Photography & Video for capturing these moments!
September 29, 2016
We’re celebrating for the whole year leading up to our 50th anniversary, in Fall 2017. Find out what we have planned and how you can be involved, here!
April 14, 2016
When The Other Way was established, the Westside was primarily a working-class Polish Catholic neighborhood. While many of those folks still remain in their homes, a much different mix of people live here today. In many ways, the Westside is the most diverse neighborhood in Grand Rapids – which is incredible. Because of this, we are in a season of adapting and adjusting to better reflect the hopes and address the concerns of our neighborhood. We do this in hopeful anticipation of fulfilling our vision. One of the ways we have adjusted is intentionally finding passionate Christian men and […]
March 23, 2015
The Other Way is partnering with SpringGR to offer our neighbors the opportunity to develop their business ideas. Training, mentoring and networking are designed to restore entrepreneurial roots to the local neighborhood. The 11 week program will help budding entrepreneurs in Westown turn their ideas into thriving sustainable businesses.
March 19, 2015
Megan Emigh is our Volunteer Coordinator and Fund Development Coordinator. Megan is part time (20 hrs a week) and organizes our volunteer needs and all the people and groups who inquire about serving alongside our staff as volunteers. She also helps research grants and connects with groups who could help us meet our budget needs. Megan graduated last April from GVSU with a degree in Public and Nonprofit Administration, with an emphasis in Community Development, and a minor in Spanish. She volunteered in our food pantry during her junior year at GVSU. “I gained […]
March 19, 2015
Cheri McClain-Beatty is our Community Resource Center (CRC) and Food Pantry Manager. Cheri is part time (20 hours a week), overseeing the CRC staff and all the workings of the Food Pantry. She manages all our pantry’s incoming donations, outgoing product to our neighbors and the full staff of pantry volunteers. Before coming to work at The Other Way, Cheri has worked as a pre-school teacher, medical secretary, children’s clothing designer and a graphic designer. As a member of Servant’s Community Church, she currently serves as a deacon. “I love my west side and am […]
March 19, 2015
Alvin Gray is our Program Director. He is full time and oversees all ministry programs and program staff. Alvin will help our fully staffed program team coordinate, dream, facilitate, communicate and serve our neighbors with quality and faith filled programs. Most recently, Alvin was a Project Lift Coordinator at Brown Hutcherson Ministries and has served as an independent consultant in the area of diversity, equity and inclusion, strategic planning, and other organizational development practices. He has worked in both for-profit and not-for-profit management positions. Alvin has also enjoyed instructing leadership development courses with Grand Rapids […]