Starr Commonwealth Receives Holiday Gifts from Southern Michigan Bank & Trust for Middle School Students

Through the generosity of Southern Michigan Bank & Trust (SMBT), Starr Commonwealth was the recipient of gift baskets for students participating in its Student Resiliency and Empowerment Center (REC). Gifts were delivered prior to the holiday break during a celebration and photo opportunity, during which time Southern Michigan Bank & Trust representatives were presented with thank you cards made by the REC student recipients.

Piloted in the spring of 2022 and launched in full during the fall of 2022, the REC’s purpose is to create a dynamic environment for middle school students that foster resilience and helps them develop confidence, self-esteem, and a growth mindset. The goal of the program is to match students with support that allows them to develop and flourish socially, emotionally, and academically.

“These kids deserve an entire community that cares and rallies behind them,” said Starr President and CEO Elizabeth Carey. “Partners like Southern Michigan Bank & Trust are crucial to these youth. We’ve built an amazing program along with the Battle Creek Family YMCA and Summit Pointe, where we are able to reach youth in homes and schools to find their paths early in their lives. With financial support and community investment from partners like SMBT, we are able to help even more youth heal and flourish!”

“Southern has a long history of giving back to the communities in which we serve,” said John Castle, Chairman and CEO of Southern Michigan Bank & Trust. “We are proud to further this tradition by partnering with Starr Commonwealth, the Battle Creek Family YMCA, and Summit Pointe, to give these deserving students something special during the holiday season.”

By Matt Ray

About Starr Commonwealth

Starr Commonwealth is dedicated to the mission to lead with courage to create positive experiences so that all children, families, and communities flourish. We specialize in residential, community-based, educational, and professional training programs that build on the strengths of children, adults, and families in communities around the world. To schedule a training or consultation, please contact or call 800-837-5591.