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Stories

Let them know they matter

I wrote this two years ago. What has changed? Not much, if anything. But one good thing I can say is that there are incredibly dedicated grassroots organizations there, making a difference one life at a time. Join us. Show someone love who might not feel loved today....

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Where there is breath, there is hope

Every Tuesday, after teaching a textile workshop in Kensington, I want to write about the people we meet and the stories we hear. But I can’t quite put into words how incredible the experience is and how overwhelming the emotions are some days. Yesterday we met A, who...

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Nothing makes me happy

Yesterday in Kensington: "Nothing makes me happy anymore. Nothing interests me. Except getting high. I'm letting fear control my life. I can't go to treatment - my mom doesn't know I'm using. She thinks I'm doing good. I'm not doing so bad - I still have a job and I...

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The best part

Overheard today in Kensington on the Sunday outing...B to the new guy: "Hey, don't forget to read the notes. They're the best part of the package." SaveSave SaveSave...

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Sanctuary studio

I teach a textile workshop every week at Mural Arts' Kensington Storefront. I also give those who come to the workshop a chance to share their thoughts for Epidemic. My friend and studio-mate Kathryn Pannepacker said it best - our studio in Kensington is a sanctuary!...

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You’re listening

On Wednesday in Kensington, I met K over by the bridge. He told me about his time in prison, and about how some of the guards would bring drugs and cell phones in and sell them to the inmates. He said he was treated horribly in prison, and "imagine if you were in...

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Dream come true

Malayna (my 13-yr-old daughter) and I were talking about my new gig teaching a 10-week textile workshop series at Kensington & Somerset. I told her how we had a mix of people - some of our friends and a few people who came in from the streets. I told her about T,...

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Never enough

There were so many people in need on the streets today. The amount of hungry, sick, hurting people was overwhelming. We do our best, but there is never enough. As one of my friends said today, “we could fill a flatbed truck with stuff and it still wouldn’t be enough.”...

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A normal life

The weather was beautiful on Sunday, so K&A was busy, as usual, with some new people as well as the regulars. I talked for a little while with A, who told me that he is a veteran and a former union worker. He was recently released from prison to the streets. He...

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Food for a photo

We were talking with M at the bridge today, and he told us he recently got his hair cut by a group who comes out on the streets and gives haircuts to people for free. He talked about how they took before and after photos of him, and said he didn’t really like that. He...

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God is still alive

Sunday in Kensington was a gorgeous spring day. While we were hanging out near the Huntingdon el stop, a young man approached us and said, "I just got off the el and saw you guys and wanted to say 'this is a sign that god is still alive.'"...

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Listening & witnessing & laughing

Sometimes a Sunday in Kensington looks like this: Sitting with 84-year-old JD, looking at the old photos he pulled out of the worn duct-taped envelope. Hearing stories of his life - his wife who left him, his son who passed years ago of AIDS, his truck-driving career....

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