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DEARBORN, MI-The Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services is planning a $15-million project that will create a community health care and research center, a youth and family center, and the nation’s first museum dedicated to the Arab-American experience. Approximately 220,000 Arab-Americans reside in the Detroit region.

Michigan boasts the largest concentration of Arab people outside the Middle East–as many as 300,000 people, with 90% living in the southeastern part of the state.

Approximately 15 years ago, locally-based ACCESS established its first medical, public health, mental health and family counseling services and programs.

In launching its Arab American Heritage Campaign, ACCESS seeks to raise $15 million. Projections indicate that Michigan’s Arab American population will reach the 500,000 mark by 2010.

ACCESS is seeking $3.3 million to build a 24,000-sf structure on Schaefer Road in the heart of Dearborn.

The group is also establishing a National Arab-American museum and cultural center. The 36,000-sf, $7.2-million facility, to be located on Michigan Avenue directly opposite Dearborn city hall, will preserve and document the experiences and accomplishments of Arab-Americans in the US.

The group also plans to build a 30,000-sf youth and family center that will provide recreational and sports facilities as well as space for ACCESS’s youth and cultural development programming under one roof. The building is expected to cost $4.5 million.

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