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Seeing Blue

When Edd Conboy took over orchestrating the Breaking Bread meals at Broad Street Ministry in Philadelphia, he focused on developing as many ways as possible to counteract the constant messages about scarcity that their guests encounter each and every...

Lessons in Community from Chicago’s South Side

Robert J. Sampson and his colleagues have devoted decades to studying the enduring impact of place.* They have found that two factors often predict whether a neighborhood is crime prone: Is there mutual trust and altruism among neighbors? and...

Community Building through Gifts

One way of thinking about how communities get built is by seeing that the principal resource people have for the task is their gifts, skills, talents, capacities. So when we ask, “How could this neighborhood be built?” the answer...

The Neighbor Challenge # 3

After last week’s challenge to meet a neighbor, I’ve been a little nervous.  I was out-of-town all weekend, and that left only a few short days before my deadline.  What if I didn’t meet someone?  So, I’ve been waiting and watching...

Growing Power ~ Will Allen

Former professional basketball player Will Allen is a leader in the food security and urban farming movement through his farm and not-for-profit, Growing Power. He and his organization have trained and inspired people in every corner of the US...

From Gangs to Gardens: How Community Agriculture Transformed Quesada Avenue

Flowers bloom alongside Quesada Avenue. Photo by Katherine Gustafson.   In 2002, two neighbors armed with spades and seeds changed everything for crime-addled Quesada Avenue in San Francisco’s Bayview-Hunters Point area. The street had been ground zero for the area’s drug trade...

Adelita’s Gift: The Value of Asking the Right Questions

Watch Pastor Mike Mather of Broadway United Methodist Church in Indianapolis tell how one of his congregations started asking different questions, discovered Adele’s gift and got “a lotta great food” as a bonus. Then join the conversation and share your...

Rallying the Strength of Community

“The Clearness Committee is not a cure-all,” says Parker Palmer in the excerpt from A Hidden Wholeness we posted recently in The Therapeutic Neighborhood. “But for the right person, with the right issue, it is a powerful way to...

The Good Life? It’s Close to Home

When family members do not work or live well together we sometimes call the family dysfunctional. We prescribe professional help for the family or advocate for social policies that would support it—child care, parental leave, extended unemployment insurance, debt...

Is Square Dancing on Its Last Legs?

Activities like square dancing, which requires teamwork and a sense of play, allow people to tap into the heartbeat of a neighborhood or a town. After Steve called to interview me for this article in the San Diego Union Tribune,...
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Drawing from Indigenous Wisdom: Centering Life in Society & Economy

Building a "next system" to supplant the current systemic drivers of our economic and political crises should include the...
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