Force 4 Good: Community already busy transforming Cody High School

Life Remodeled teaming up with Chuck Gaidica, community volunteers to give Cody High School, neighborhood a facelift

DETROIT - More work is being done to help transform Cody High School and the neighborhood that surrounds it.

The community has come forward with donations to help update the workout rooms and make them usable again for students.

It is part of a bigger plan involving Life Remodeled and thousands of volunteers to bring much needed renovations to Cody High School and the surrounding neighborhood.

The equipment room at the high school was an old room in the back of the gym, that stored chairs. The carpet was full of mold, there was no lighting, and there was a huge hole in the wall.  

Turning the old equipment room into a functioning workout room for students and staff was only a dream.

"I have been here for about three years and we have not had a functioning weight room since then," said Vernon Williams, athletic director for Cody High School.

"We get creative, run up and down the stairs, typically cardio, push-ups, sit ups, jumping jacks, boot camp style stuff. We haven't had any real weight training in quite some time."

Why Cody High School?

Despite challenges and the many obstacles in their way, the students at Cody High School are now on the path to success. Four years ago, the graduation rate at Cody High School was at 30 percent, but because of a curriculum overhaul, the dedication of the three Cody High School principals, and the student's desire to learn, the graduation rate for Cody High School is now 80 percent.

When Life Remodeled heard about Cody High School's success story and saw the high school was in desperate need of beautification, they knew they had to step in and help restore hope.

Local 4's Chuck Gaidica is working with  Life Remodeled to help Cody High School finish the rebuilding process. 

Gaidica reached out to a few metro-Detroit businesses, hoping to get a few workout machines for the school. The results were overwhelming.

"It's a great project," said Bill Checkley of Vocheck Flooring Services." It needs a lot of help, a lot of people, a lot of volunteers. It's a real feel good thing."

Vocheck Flooring Services donated new carpet and installation to Cody High School's new workout facilities.
"I think it has an opportunity to really make a difference," said Mark Pinchoff, owner of The Sports Club of Novi. "We are donating fitness equipment for the project. We are donating about 30 pieces of cardio equipment and about 30 pieces of weight-training equipment."

In fact, The Sports Club of Novi donated so much equipment Cody High School now has three workout rooms.

The students at Cody High School are touched by the donations.

"I seen the equipment, it made me feel special," said Cody High School senior Julian Johnson.

"This shows that there are people out there that care, that they don't see anytime," said Johnathon Matthews, principal of Cody Academy of Public Leadership. " I think it is going to change how they view their relationship with the world beyond their neighborhood."

New carpet and workout equipment may seem like small changes, but to the students and staff at Cody High School it is so much more.

"When it is all said and done, these kids are going to blossom because of what is happening here," Checkley said. "It's a good environment for them, they want to be here and they will just excel."

A new workout room is only the beginning. This August Cody High School will be getting a facelift. With the help of Life Remodeled and 10,000 metro-Detroit volunteers, Cody High School will be turned into a dream school. A new roof, medical lab, and football field are just some of the changes happening this summer. 

Help Is Needed

Life Remodeled is also dedicated to helping the community change. One hundred blocks surrounding Cody High School will be renovated, with abandoned houses being demolished.  In addition to that, the homes of 20 Cody High School students will be renovated.

Renovation week for Cody High School and the surrounding community  is August 11-16, with a party celebrating a successful renovation on August 17.

Volunteers are still needed! To learn how to volunteer, click here.

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