Neighborhood Garden?

This walk focused on 22nd and 23rd Street.

A guy at the bus stop across the street talked about how people utilize a community garden in the neighborhood.  People aren’t greedy.  They don’t take more than they can eat.  And they take responsibility for the garden by plucking weeds and watering.  It has a coop effect where people are sharing in the maintenance and provision in the garden.  He suggested we do a plot at the church.

Another couple on their porch talked about the need to clean up the alley between 21st street and 22nd street.  There is brush growing over and pot holes.

Another family was on their porch.  The grandfather was reclining and is 89 years old.  He never smoked, never drank, but did some womanizing.  He said he believed in working for your food rather than having it distributed to you for free.

A couple people talked about how much money the city is putting into the bike race.

Job Postings and Mental Health

This walk focused on 22nd Street, the sidewalk beside Fairfield Court, and 24th Street.

We spoke with some men at the bus stop directly across from the church.  They talked about a men’s center that focused on jobs.  They suggested a bulletin board with jobs postings and people there to help with applications and resumes.

They also suggested a regular hot meal during the week.

One man near Fairfield talked about the need to have a “dialectical” mode of conversation because that is what the youth are attracted to — to argue about religious truth in order to get down to what’s real.

One of our church members had a hauled a fallen tree away from one of the neighbors.

We talked in the end about taking mental health issues in the community seriously.  And having to develop the fundamentals together with people in order to get and hold down a job.  In any effort to address the systemic employment issues, we have to be ready to have more failure than success, to hear what the community is saying, and to start small with a grassroots effort that involves attentive listening.

Some of our Neighbors

This walk focused on 24th Street.  It was tough going.  Not many people talked with us on this day.

We saw one woman who has come to the church but recently got a job where she works on Sundays.  She was tired from work.

We saw a woman who comes to the PeterPaul Development Seniors Program at the church on her porch.

We saw some of the great grandchildren of one of our members out on a porch.

One woman said she was praying in her car as we walked by.  It seems that she may have been praying that we wouldn’t talk to her because she had a rough day.  Oops.  We did talk to her.