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Showing posts from July, 2014

Closed Doors!

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I work in a place where I'm surrounded by hundreds of men, women and children who not only have to deal with the devastating reality of locked and closed doors, but also have to constantly deal with having doors slammed in their faces! For those who don't know; I'm a case manager and outreach worker at Cornerstone Community Outreach, a homeless shelter in Uptown, Chicago!
I want to start by emphasizing something very important: most of the time, the closed doors people at CCO face, are completely out of their control. Most of the time, these doors are not closed because of laziness, a lack of effort or an unwillingness to open doors, but rather, they are closed because of harsh realities like oppression, inequality, discrimination and racism. The sad and ugly truth is; certain people in my neighborhood, Uptown, want to shut Cornerstone's doors for good, not because we've done something wrong, but simply because we open our doors to house, feed, clothe and assist …

Snippets of Hope..... in Uptown!

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I often have a tendency to fall into melancholy; as I look at my surroundings, it's easy to dwell on all the negatives, the oppression and the constant injustice that floods the streets of Uptown! But this summer, I want to focus my attention on little stories or snippets of hope, flowing from the streets of Uptown!   

Here's one from last Thursday....

Last Thursday evening, our family went down to Clarendon Park with Darrell and Laura for a picnic. After eating, we took Cyrus and Muriwai down the block so they could run around in the playground. As they played, we adults sat on the park bench chatting. 
From behind, a lady who's a little older than I, limped up to me with a big smile on her face and said, "hi Jeremy!" I did a double take and exclaimed back, "hi Tamara! It's great to see you". She shocked me! I hadn't seen her for well over a year, and there she was, standing beside me, looking good and healthy, watching over her granddaughter.

Ta…