Berean Church in South Bend, Ind,, Caught Up Ministries based in Detroit, and Harbor of Hope Church in Benton Harbor, Mich., were three of the 11 ministries receiving $40,000 grants.

May 4, 2023

Private Foundation Invests in Lake Union Ministries

In March 2023, the Versacare Foundation awarded grants totaling almost $200,000 across the Lake Union.

Berean Church in South Bend, Ind,, Caught Up Ministries based in Detroit, and Harbor of Hope Church in Benton Harbor, Mich., were three of the 11 ministries each receiving a grant for $40,000. According to a Versacare news release, these top awardees were “by invitation to applicants implementing proven successful practices as well as organizations demonstrating creativity and innovation in the delivery of services that meet the needs of individuals or groups.” 

Versacare Foundation is an independent foundation which has been serving Seventh-day Adventist ministries and a select few other humanitarian efforts with financial grants since 1990. A self-funded lay organization, its board is comprised of both lay Adventists and present and former Adventist church employees.  

The full list of recipients and their project details are: 

Berean Church (Indiana) - $40,000

Funds will expand six key ministry programs that respond to the community’s most pressing needs: Encounter After School Program, Community Youth Transformation Club, Career Power Coaching Group, and opportunities for the congregation youth to serve the community through the Homeless Outreach Program, First-Responders Care Program, and Monthly Community Engagement and Development outreach projects. 

Caught Up, Inc. (Michigan) - $40,000

Caught Up has a community-based center and it has made an impact with consistent programs (Project Empower, Project ReEntry, and Saturday Night Live), trust building in the community, and bonding with youth. Caught Up provides at-risk youth with an alternative, safe, and positive social experience with their peers. Young men are offered positive social experiences through sports activities, presentations by guest speakers from diverse professional backgrounds, and learning life skills in preparation for college and adulthood. The funds will expand accessibility, increase attendance, and provide programs for 1,800 participants.

Harbor of Hope Church (Michigan) - $40,000

The Stop the Violence: Operation Safe Space is an initiative created in response to a series of violent acts that left several young people dead, family members devastated, and the community feeling unsafe. Phase one of this initiative was launched with the Stop the Violence Tour. The next phase is serving three of those communities for an entire year.

Illinois Conference - $10,000

Funding is for equipment such as smart TVs, as well as stable internet services to allow remote teaching for all students that attend junior academies.  The project beneficiaries are Gurnee Christian Academy, North Shore Adventist Academy, and Thompsonville Junior Academy. The students in the 9th and 10th-grade programs will benefit from a certified subject-level teacher to teach all subjects.

Lake Union Conference - $30,000

Funds will allow the five conferences to have Exceptional Learner Teacher Education (special needs) certification. This includes teacher trainings (such as workshops-for smaller groups, or presentations for larger groups) resource materials such as books, kits, electronic resources, or other materials that will aid teachers with special education needs certification in various branches of special education services.


The other recipients were schools and the level of funding was based on the amount of classrooms. Schools with three or less classrooms were eligible for $5,000, four or more classrooms for $10,000. The funds are for any classroom/teaching need for STEM (not including teacher computers, business office computers, etc.) and a school is only eligible for STEM grant funding once every 3 years.

First Flint Christian School (Michigan) - $5,000 
Hillside Christian School (Wisconsin) - $5,000 
Holland Adventist Academy (Michigan) - $10,000 
Marion Adventist Christian School (Illinois) - $5,000 
Otter Creek Christian School (Wisconsin) - $5,000 
Petersen Adventist School (Wisconsin)  - $3,500

Since awarding its first grants in 1990, Versacare Foundation has funded 1,734 grants to faith-based organizations and eligible non-profit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organizations totaling $33,644,925.  

Grant applications are accepted July 1 through December 31 at

Lake Union Herald staff