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Hi friends! Great news, Kyle Korver an all-star basketball player with the Atlanta Hawks and long-time supporter of community development has partnered with UIC College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs and the CCDA to complete research on community development in low income communities throughout the US. Please see the link to learn more and "like" UIC Voorhees Center and Better Together Tour to follow updates on this project! Thanks for friendship and support along this journey. We are Better Together!

Have a wonderful summer! Enjoy the warmth and sunshine,From everyone at the Voorhees Center In this newsletter...Voorhees NewsOut and About with VoorheesCongratulations!
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Hi all. This summer our goal is mixing creatives to learn and share more about important work addressing poverty through community development in the U.S. We will be a family with roles as researchers, educators, artists, and learners. We look forward to this upcoming journey with you!

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We are working on a second tour! We aim to visit new cities, learn about, with & share these communities' stories, and create art, research & joy along through the second Better Together Tour! Please join us & invite your friends. We are Better Together!

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While we were in California documenting City of Refuge Sacramento, they told us we needed to meet Leah Albright-Byrd. Leah started Bridget's Dream, an organization dedicated to providing practical trauma-informed services to victims, their families, and youth at-risk of exploitation into the world of sex trafficking. Her story is one of redemption, and as you'll hear, if given the chance to change her past, she said she wouldn't, because all she has gone through has helped change the lives of many.


https://vimeo.com/81119204

While in Sacramento, we have the opportunity to sit down with Leah Albright-Bird, a survivor of sex-trafficking and founder of Bridget's Dream, a non-profit that…
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What if you said yes when someone asked you to pick up and go do something crazy which could potentially lead to incredible good?? Shane Grammar, founder of SG Studios Inc did, and it changed his life. What if that was how you lived, always on the lookout for an opportunity that may seem a bit out there, but this time you said yes. What would happen… to you and to others? https://vimeo.com/80491181

While on tour we got to sit down with Shane Grammer and hear how he makes a difference fighting sex trafficking through his art with Agape International. Shane's…
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Revisiting old footage as we prepared the new videos re-inspired us, as well as the founder of Seer Outfitters (our sponsor), Kyle Korver. See what he had to say on our blog: http://bettertogethertour.com/home/2013/…/25/tour-revisited/

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With the release of the video Wednesday about Max Brown and his amazing family, we wanted to share the video we created for SEER Group today. Happy Friday! https://vimeo.com/52644545

A Better Together "Feature" of Uncommon Good in Salt Lake City. Seer Group has faithfully poured back into the city by offering wheelchair ramps free of charge to…
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Meet Max. When Max was three years old, he was diagnosed with spastic cerebral palsy, confining him to a wheelchair. For those of you who were following along last year, while we were in Utah, we shared the story of SEER Group, an organization that builds wheelchair ramps for free for families. The Brown's were the recipients of one of those ramps. We are still moved by their kindness, as they welcomed us into their home, fed us, and shared their story. https://vimeo.com/79843156

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A year ago, we asked ourselves "what would happen if, instead of focusing our attention on the negative happening around us, we chose to turn our eyes to the good, the redemptive and the hopeful?" So 4 of us, relative strangers, set out in an RV to capture and share those stories.

These are the stories of artists and authors, tradesmen and families and organizations who are selflessly using their lives to impact their communities for good. Through this journey across 8000 mil...es of America, we were challenged, moved, and changed. We returned back to Chicago, thrust back into the rhythms and demands of "normal life", and consequently, many of the inspiring stories we encountered remained untold.

So now, months removed, we are revisiting all the footage, the pictures, and the memories that so moved us, to share with you these amazing people. So join us now on our journey and be inspired. https://vimeo.com/79697497

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A year ago, we asked ourselves "what would happen if, instead of focusing our attention on the negative happening around us, we chose to turn our eyes to the good,…
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It's been a while, but the guy who helped fund our trip, Kyle Korver, is helping to build 4 wheelchair ramps for families in need with SEER Group in Utah. If you remember, we did a feature on them.

They are 115 shirts from their goal, can you help us help them?? Follow the link. http://bit.ly/YaKN1H. It was Kyle's birthday Sunday, so he is including an autograph in each order.

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It’s easy to let Oak Park be just another inner city neighborhood riddled with crime, drugs, gang activity, and poverty. And we can leave it at that, a caricature for a depressed city overcome by darkness.

But in our visit while on tour, laughing with the neighborhood kids, walking the streets, and witnessing the vision that Loren and Rachelle Ditmore have for this city, it became so much more.

Faces had names. Stories became real. And statistics gained flesh.

...

Capture the vision of City of Refuge Sacramento in our latest video: https://vimeo.com/58339643

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Dreams aren't born in the sky, they are born in the swamp. - Josh Riebock Heroes and Monsters. We are working through our interview with him now!

On the tour, we kinda kicked it old school a bit, and when we say old school, we mean using disposable cameras. Smartphones are awesome and all, but there is just something about a click, and having to rewind a camera to get picture #2!

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Better Together Tour added 119 new photos from January 4, 2013 to the album: better together tour: the disposables. — with Alexandra Nelson.

In our instant-gratification society, where so much we experience is through some kind of screen, there's something really beautiful about the surprise of film ...photography. that's also why we love disposable cameras so much. they're so… visceral. there's something to SEEING a moment, clicking the button, and winding it to snap another one. you pay for every picture. and you only get 24. or 27 sometimes. having to wait to get film developed to find out if it got caught on the negatives. And even if you captured the moment… There's so many variables. Thumbs get in the way of the lens. The sun flares, and the colors! They're either incredibly vibrant or they're all grey. Sometimes there's rainbow lens flares, and sometimes the film gets double-exposed. I used to see these as flaws, the throw-aways from the exposures… But I was lucky to have a photo professor that saw and encouraged me to see something different and beautiful in them, adding to the humanity and intricacy of the images. Anyway about it, we love the way these photos have captured our experience in a different way. They feel raw and grainy, real, and rich. Let us know which ones stand out to you

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Better Together Tour added 119 new photos from January 4, 2013 to the album: better together tour: the disposables. — with Alexandra Nelson.
January 4, 2013

In our instant-gratification society, where so much we experience is through some kind of screen, there's something really beautiful about the surprise of film photography. that's also why we love disposable cameras so much. they're so… visceral. there's something to SEEING a moment, clicking the button, and winding it to snap another one. you pay for every picture. and you only get 24. or 27 sometimes. having to wait to get film developed to find out if it got caught on the... negatives. And even if you captured the moment… There's so many variables. Thumbs get in the way of the lens. The sun flares, and the colors! They're either incredibly vibrant or they're all grey. Sometimes there's rainbow lens flares, and sometimes the film gets double-exposed. I used to see these as flaws, the throw-aways from the exposures… But I was lucky to have a photo professor that saw and encouraged me to see something different and beautiful in them, adding to the humanity and intricacy of the images. Anyway about it, we love the way these photos have captured our experience in a different way. They feel raw and grainy, real, and rich. Let us know which ones stand out to you

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In a Rocky-like comeback, Clothed: Progression, thread by thread. won our giveaway with a last-second, final round surge. Congratulations, and thank you to everyone who voted. We will post the design of their shirt when its created!