• Phone: 313-833-1300

Social Work

In 1925, the Luella Hannan Memorial Foundation began offering comprehensive lifetime assistance to hundreds of low-income seniors living in their own home.  Prior to receiving this assistance, the Hannan Foundation would send out “friendly visitors” that completed a comprehensive assessment to determine the seniors needs and eligibility for services.  Once the senior began receiving the assistance, these “friendly visitors” would continue to remain in contact with the senior and complete home visits to ensure all of their needs were being met.  Those “friendly visitors” were the probably some of the first geriatric social workers in Detroit.

Today, the Social Work Department carries on this rich history through the Zena Baum Senior Service Center.  Our social workers continue to complete comprehensive assessments to develop a person-centered plan of care for the older adult.  We work with the senior to meet their goals which range from assistance with applying for benefits to finding supportive services that help them remain in their home for as long as possible.  We take a proactive approach and provide follow-up with the older adult depending on their level of need.

We also partner with schools of Social Work at local universities and colleges to offer a dynamic and exciting internship for bachelor’s level and master’s level social work students at both macro and clinical levels.  If you are interested in an internship opportunity with the Social Work Department, please contact Melissa Draughn at 313.833.1300, ext. 32 or [email protected]

Programs & Services

Zena Baum Senior Service Center

Established in 2007 and named after a pioneering geriatric social worker, the Zena Baum Senior Service Center helps older adults access and navigate the services they need to age in their homes, improve physical and emotional health, and remain independent. Services include:

  • conducting assessments that screen for social isolation, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, elder abuse, and physical well-being
  • navigating and applying for Department of Human Services benefits and other services as needed to maintain/improve quality of life (e.g. Medicaid/Medicare)
  • navigating resources to assist with finances (e.g., mortgage and tax foreclosure assistance)
  • referrals to legal assistance, qualified medical professionals, and home service providers
  • procuring home medical equipment
  • securing nutrition assistance (e.g. Meals on Wheels)
  • securing transportation
  • assistance applying to Hannan’s Emergency Fund which provides small grants for seniors with urgent needs such as hearing aids, eyeglasses, medical equipment, and furniture/mattresses

All services are free and confidential.

To make an appointment:

Please call 313.833.1300 ext. 32 

Email Melissa Draughn, LMSW at [email protected] 

Support Groups

The Detroit Elders Project

This group is for Detroit’s LGBT older adults to learn about issues facing their lives and socialize with one another in a safe, supportive environment. Dinner provided.

Meets the 3rd  Thursday of every month   Time:   5:00 pm-7:00 pm Location: Hannan Center Facilitator: Cornelius Wilson

Parkinson’s Support Group

This support group is for those living with Parkinson’s disease. Attendees will find support with others who have faced similar challenges and gain important knowledge about living rewarding lives.

Meets the 3rd Tuesday of each month          Time:  1:00 pm-2:00 pm             Location: Hannan Center
Facilitator: Joanne Bonds

Veterans Support Group (in partnership with AARP)

This is a support group for veterans by veterans. These bi-monthly meetings are a chance for veterans to network and learn important information about resources and programs in the area and other issues affecting their lives.

TBA                     Time:  6:00 pm-8:00 pm            Room:  Hannan Center
Facilitator: Danny Craig, Commissioner – Southfield Veterans’ Commission