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Can Free College Save American Cities?

Politico Magazine

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Huge numbers of students lack the chance to go to college because of financial problems. Recently, Kalamazoo schools received more funding allowing them to have the chance to help and pay for students to then go to college and receive a higher education.

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Charter school takeovers: As York schools near privatization, lessons from New Orleans and Michigan

Patriot News

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York schools are considering changing public schools into charter schools, following the example of New Orleans and Michigan, in order to help their school system which is crumbling.

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Crime and blight still remain

Fayetteville Observer

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Civic leaders in the U.S. struggle to effectively help their distressed neighborhoods. East Lake, Atlanta, created a replicable model that mixes residents of differing socio-economic status, and focuses on education and health in the area.

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Former Black Panther Launches Oakland Urban Farm to Give Ex-Prisoners a Fresh Start

Civil Eats

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After incarceration, Black men and women have a difficult time re-integrating into society without financial and educational resources. A former Black Panther activist has created the non-profit Oakland &the World Enterprises to offer an urban farm as a prisoner re-entry program and community cen...

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Land, Co-ops, Compost: A Local Food Economy Emerges in Boston's Poorest Neighborhoods

Yes! Magazine

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By the 1980s, Roxbury and north Dorchester had been devastated by the disinvestment and white flight of the 1960s and 1970s. Racist banking and housing policies (“redlining”) had segregated people of color from opportunity, barring them from getting home loans except in certain neighborhoods. So ...

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How One Weekend in Dallas Sparked a Movement for Urban Change

Next City

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A Dallas urban neighborhood was dilapidated with abandoned storefronts and offered no vitality for pedestrians. A group of artists and community members created Build a Better Block, in which local artisans and small businesses took over a vacant block and transformed it for a limited time to en...

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How Seattle Made Dark Alleys Safer—By Throwing Parties In Them

Yes! Magazine

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Alleys in Seattle were once places of illicit, illegal, and unsanitary activity. The International Sustainability Institute in Seattle began organizing music and art events to bring in people, which, in turn, cleaned-up the crime and garbage. As an urban development strategy, adjacent vacant stor...

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How to Build a Better Neighborhood

The New York Times

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The Oak Cliff neighborhood in Dallas suffered from recession-closed businesses and crime. Then community members used placemaking, in which people shaped their own environment to improve the quality of life, and the concept of Build a Better Block, which was a pop-up event showcasing art, food, m...

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Interrupting violence in Brooklyn

MSNBC

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S.O.S Crown Heights (Save Our Streets) employs the Cure Violence method developed in Chicago during the '90s, in which "violence interrupters" are used to build relationships with a neighborhood's most at-risk youths and de-escalate conflicts. Most of the interrupters are from the communities the...

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It’s Not Just Nice to Share, It’s the Future

The New York Times

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New York City’s brand-new Citi Bike program is not just a bike share. It’s the city’s contribution to the new sharing economy, in which people don’t buy things, but buy access to things.

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Collections are versatile, powerful and simple to create. From a customized course reader to an action-guide for an upcoming service-learning trip, collections illuminate themes, guide inquiry, and provide context for how people around the world are responding to social challenges.

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Add stories to your collection from your list of Favorites below, or add stories directly to a collection from Search or Discover. Anytime you see the collection icon you can add a story. Just click the icon and follow the instructions on your screen.

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Our issue area taxonomy was adapted from the PCS Taxonomy with definitions by the Foundation Center, which is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 4.0 International License.

Photos are licensed under Attribution Non Commercial 2.0 Generic Creative Commons license / Desaturated from original, and are credited to the following photographers:

Fondriest Environmental, David De Wit / Community Eye Health, Linda Steil / Herald Post, John Amis / UGA College of Ag & Environmental Sciences – OCCS, Andy B, Peter Garnhum, Thomas Hawk, 7ty9, Isriya Paireepairit, David Berger, UnLtd The Foundation For Social Entrepreneurs, Michael Dunne, Burak Kebapci, and Forrest Berkshire / U.S. Army Cadet Command public affairs

Photos are licensed under Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 2.0 Generic Creative Commons license, and are credited to the following photographers:

Ra'ed Qutena, 段 文慶, Fabio Campo, City Clock Magazine, Justin Norman, scarlatti2004, Gary Simmons, Kathryn McCallum, and Nearsoft Inc

Photos are licensed under CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication Creative Commons license / Desaturated from original, and are credited to the following photographers:

Burak Kebapci and SCY.

Photos are licensed under Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) and are credited to the US Army Corps of Engineers.

Conference attendee listening to speaker, Jenifer Daniels / Colorstock getcolorstock.com.

Photo Credit: Kevork Djansezian via Getty Images

Photo Credit: Sonia Narang