Choosing to Dream Big

At Embrace we talk a lot about being dream releasers, inspiring our neighbors to imagine what their neighborhood can be; to see beyond the current, often dismal, reality to a new future that we can make together. Last week at our prayer time one of our neighborhood leaders, Richard, showed up with a four foot long roll of paper covered in sharpie titled “I can see . . “. As you can see in the picture, Richard dreams big. He dreams that we can make Brookland Park pedestrian friendly, with rental bicycles, golf carts and even rickshaws to move people up and down the street. He sees a place where the neighborhood can learn about sustainable energy and have an “Apollo of Achievement” to teach kids about robotics, chess and debate. He dreams of a shelter for girls, a place for senior adults to connect to each other, and stores from national retail chains. I love Richard’s vision because he chooses to dream big and ignore cynics who only imagine more of the same. It’s too easy to look at the Brookland Park corridor and see the empty barber shops, abandoned buildings and closed stores and imagine that it always has been, and always will be, this way. The cynics ignore the astounding potential and entrepreneurial spirit of Brookland Park’s people. We have neighbors who look at a store front and see a bustling restaurant or stand in front of the abandoned theater and imagine an arts center. Our neighbors look at a dilapidated house and see a tool to teach job skills. They are able to see beyond...

Great Neighbors in Hillside

All summer our team has explored what is means to be a great neighbor. One team member, Lindsay Gullatte, shared with her husband Tony, what she learned about neighboring. The results were amazing! Lindsay and Tony formed the Hillside Soldiers football team and the Hillside Superstars cheer squad  as a way of caring for their neighbors. Lindsay, who has coached in competition cheering, loves mentoring young girls and hopes to build lasting relationships. Tony joined in initially with 6 boys for football. As word of his efforts quickly spread, the team grew to 26 boys with support from 6 friends as coaches. Parents have enthusiastically supported Lindsay and Tony.  Hillside Soldiers are more than just something to do for the summer. Their vision is: To motivate young men to become more active with sports in and around their community to show that respect can come from doing positive activities and opportunities are out there if you stay focused, work hard and do your best. And their mission is: To empower young boys so that they become strong young men. To teach discipline, endurance, strength, confidence and respect. To instill proper fundamentals of sportsmanship, teamwork, and community involvement among our young men in order to keep a positive movement in and around our environment. Tony, Lindsay and the coaches are sure to succeed with your support. The team is currently in need of the following items: shoulder pads knee pads side pads helmets mouth pieces first aid kits footballs whistles coolers uniforms (jerseys and pants) athletic supporters Gatorade/bottles of water play books  transportation flags cleats playing field Consider supporting these great...

Dante

My name is Dante Ericka Johnson, and I am a College Sophomore at Spelman College. I am studying Political Science with the hopes of becoming a Lawyer. I love children, shopping, reading and volunteering in general. My hopes for this summer are to be a part of something that is bettering my community. I want to see the Brookland Park neighborhood come alive. This is also a chance for me to get out of my comfort...