Charity Mahouna Hicks "Wage Love" Fund

$11,872 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 196 people in 59 months

The beloved Charity Mahouna Hicks joined the ancestors on Tuesday July 8th 2014.
As a community we have been sending love to Charity since she suffered traumatic injuries due to a hit and run in NYC on May 31st.

Please consider donating to this fund with a one time or monthly contribution.

This fund will specifically go towards:
-Covering immediate costs of bringing Charity home to Detroit and holding a proper home going service.
-Sustaining Charity's husband Louis while he takes unpaid family medical leave from work. (Bereavement Fund)

All other medical and legal expenses are currently being covered.

Other ways to support:

-Forward this appeal to others in your network who may be compassionate and care about justice

-Heed the call to Wage Love. One of the last times Charity spoke with the Detroit community at a local organizing gathering she shared these words and it is now our time to put it into practice.

Charity Mahouna Hicks

Charity Hicks was an extraordinary Detroit activist, advocate, and movement weaver. A native Detroiter raised on the lower eastside right off of the Detroit River which contributed to her love for the environment.

As a founding member of the People’s Water Board, Charity Charity helped co-lead the peoples’ response to the City’s shut-off of thousands of Detroit households for non-payment of water bills. Charity was instrumental in bringing Maude Barlow to Detroit to speak about water as part of the commons. Maude declared: "But the people of Detroit face another sinister enemy. Every day, thousands of them, in a city that is situated right by a body of water carrying one-fifth of the world’s water supply, are having their water ruthlessly cut off by men working for the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department. Most of the residents are African American and two-thirds of the cut offs involve children, which means that in some cases, child welfare authorities are moving in to remove children from their homes as it is a requirement that there be working utilities in all homes housing children." In May 2014 Charity was arrested and detained overnight for speaking out against water shutoffs on her block in Detroit.

She was a Master Gardener through Michigan State University-Extension, a member of Sierra Club, the Great Lakes Water COMMONS group, and several other environmental/ecological groups. She was trained in the New Economy Initiative via The Land Policy Institute of Michigan State University on place making and regional economic development.

She became a fellow of the EAT4HEALTH equitable food & agricultural policy fellowship, and the Policy Director at East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC) helping to empower the Detroit community to protect, preserve, and value the land, air and water. In her food system work, she was the lead person on the team which wrote the City of Detroit Food Security Policy (2008) and the articles for the establishment of the Detroit Food Policy Council (2009), and was the initial community engager/facilitator of the Detroit Food Justice Taskforce, a collaborative of 10 community based groups, and local activists in Detroit formed in 2009 to work in the food system and urban agricultural movement to promote a justice centered food system. Charity approached the food & agricultural system from the frames of health/nutrition, environmental/ecological justice, and economic equity.

Her background includes being a Clinical Research Associate- Human Subjects with the Detroit Health Disparities Research Center of the University of Michigan: a multi-faceted longitudinal health disparity study following over 1,200 African American families in Detroit which started in 2002 and was brought to closure in 2008. She worked over 10 years in research, public policy, and community activism in Detroit on health disparities, urban ecology, and African American community organizing. Charity's extensive background in public/community service led her to serve with several boards and committee groups in Detroit including: Detroit Public Schools Health Council, Detroit Grocery Store Coalition Steering Committee, Peoples Water Board Detroit, Future’s Taskforce of the Community Development Advocates of Detroit, Great Lakes Bioneers Detroit, and The Green Taskforce Water Sub-committee. She received leadership development training from the Center for Whole Communities, The Rockwood inaugural group of Upper Midwest Leadership, and the Damu Smith Organizing & Leadership Academy-Institute of the Black World.

Charity often cross-pollinated her work to build more transformation in shifting towards lasting solutions. She held community passions and interests in economic development, environmental justice, food sovereignty, urban agriculture, place making, design-architecture, community based research, health disparities, Africana culture, restorative justice, and growing the Beloved Community.

Below is one of the last interviews filmed with her. 

(memorial video and slide show by Halima Cassels, Lottie Spady, and ill weaver and final interview by Kate Levy)
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Today marks one year since Charity Hicks joined the ancestors. Her beloved community is invited to celebrate her life with Louis and family on Sunday July 19th, 12pm, at Church of the Messiah (where her home-going ceremony was held last year). Please bring a dish to share. Wage Love!
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Hello all!

We need help with food for Charity's memorial on Saturday at 12:00 at the Church of the Messiah. Sanaa has graciously volunteered to coordinate this effort but we need folks to bring dished (salad, main dishes, dessert).

Two things are needed:

Please forward this request to your networks
Please sign up for a dish and report to sanaa ( with what you can bring

Thanks everyone so much for your love and assistance!
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Please share footage and videos of Charity to be included in her memorial/life celebration service and an ongoing archive about her work. Send to
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This message comes to inform Charity’s Beloved Community of the arrangements for Visitation and the Homegoing Service Celebrating her life.

Arrangements for Charity Louise Darlene Hicks

Visitation Friday, July 18, 2014
Swanson Funeral Home
806 East Grand Blvd. (at Mack)
Detroit, Michigan, 48207
Phone Number 313-923-1122
Fax: 313-923-0763

Homegoing Service Celebrating the Life of Charity Hicks

Saturday, July 19, 2014
Church of the Messiah
231 E. Grand Blvd (at Lafayette)
Detroit, MI 48207

We were Blessed to have Charity touch our lives and thus we have a role in Charity’s Legacy. Expressions of the lessons learned from Charity, our teacher, mentor, caregiver, community warrior can be contributed to be included in a future resource publication. Send your summary to Charity Forever c/o18435 Wildemere Detroit, MI 48221 or
e-mail, subject: Charity Forever. If Charity’s life has inspired you to make a commitment to continue her work, please share your intention to be a part of keeping the legacy active. This information will be documented in the online Charity Forever Archive.
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$11,872 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 196 people in 59 months
Created July 1, 2014
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Chip On Shoulder
40 months ago

Missing Charity much.

Laurel Thompson
54 months ago

I met Charity Hicks in Montreal last winter and loved her. Her death is tragic and inexplicable. We need more people like her not fewer, and to think that she was killed while waiting for a bus breaks my heart. She was pure gold.

Sam Halpert
54 months ago

Charity Hicks was one of the most effortlessly eloquent people I've ever met. An inspiring force for justice. I was shocked and saddened when I heard about what happened to her this summer. My heart goes out to her family and her community.

Dr. Fred Pearson
56 months ago

During her student days Charity was a wonderful staff member of the Center for Peace and Conflict Studies at Wayne State University, and we are so proud of her social justice work.

Tim Kvasnosky
58 months ago
John Philo
58 months ago
58 months ago
Ecology Center
58 months ago
58 months ago
Hallie Clark
58 months ago
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