Stories

SWOP Leads Police Accountability Discussion

SWOP Leads Police Accountability Discussion

More than 160 community residents packed the auditorium at Catholic Charities’ Sisters of St. Casimir Motherhouse on Tuesday, November 15th to talk about an important issue to the Chicago Southwest community; police accountability. Led by Imelda Salazar and Rafi Peterson, the group heard testimony, reviewed facts, and met with neighbors one on one to learn about each other. Most important, the large gathering broke into small groups to develop ideas for improving both police accountability and community/police relations. The collection…

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Now, More Than Ever, Organize

Now, More Than Ever, Organize

It is safe to say that almost everyone was surprised by the results of the Presidential Election on November 8th. To many in Chicago Southwest, that surprise was not a happy outcome. President-Elect Trump’s comments on immigration, crime, banking legislation, and many other issues are in direct conflict with the work of SWOP and its partners. What to do about that? The answer is easy, don’t mourn, organize. In a time of increasing partisan rancor, name calling, and disdain for…

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The Good News and Bad News About Foreclosures

The Good News and Bad News About Foreclosures

The more things change, the more they stay the same. The change is that foreclosures are down and down by a lot across the city. What has stayed the same is that Chicago Lawn still has a foreclosure rate twice that of the city as a whole. A home of one’s own is an essential part of the American Dream. People owning houses and raising families in stable and secure homes makes a community a solid place to live. The…

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SWOP Partners to offer English as a Second Language Classes

SWOP Partners to offer English as a Second Language Classes

SWOP and Gage Park High School have partnered with Instituto Del Progresso Latino to offer free English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. The classes began on Monday, November 7th, but there is still plenty of room to join in. You can register for the class on Tuesday, November 15th from 10 – 11 a.m. at Gage Park High School, 5630 S. Rockwell, room 218. When you come to register, you will need to bring identification with your current address…

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It’s Election Day, SWOP Wants You to Get Out and Vote

It’s Election Day, SWOP Wants You to Get Out and Vote

SWOP leaders and staff have been pounding the pavement and knocking on doors in advance of today’s election. No matter which side of an issue you’re on or which candidate you favor, today is an important day to make your choices known and to have a hand in picking the people you want to lead our city, state, and nation. Focusing on an area bounded by 55th on the north, Marquette Road on the south, Western on the east, and…

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SWCC Kicks Off To Revitalize 63rd ST.

SWCC Kicks Off To Revitalize 63rd ST.

On a bright sunny morning on November 3rd, leaders from SWOP, Greater Auburn Gresham Development Corporation (GADC), and Teamwork Englewood joined with LISC Chicago and Rahm Emmanuel, Chicago’s Mayor, to announce a new effort to revitalize commercial areas on Chicago’s Southwest side. Called the Southwest Corridor Collaborative (SWCC), the initiative will target specific retail/commercial nodes in Chicago Lawn, Englewood, and Auburn Gresham. LISC Chicago has committed $50 million in loans and grants over the next 10 years to help SWOP…

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SWOP’s Reclaim Southwest Campaign Delivers More Affordable Housing to the Community

SWOP’s Reclaim Southwest Campaign Delivers More Affordable Housing to the Community

On Saturday, November 5th, SWOP and Brinshore Development will host a workshop to help families learn about affordable housing opportunities in Chicago Lawn. The workshop will take place at Morrill Math and Science Academy, 6011 S. Rockwell from 10 a.m. to noon. Between December and the coming spring, SWOP and Brinshore will make 30 new units available in nine different buildings in the community. All the units will be newly rehabbed with all new appliances, state of the art energy…

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Chicago Southwest Has A Brand New Plan

Chicago Southwest Has A Brand New Plan

On Thursday, September 29, 2016, Jamillah Rashad called 100 SWOP leaders together in the gym of Marquette School of Excellence. They were there to ratify and celebrate the completion of a new Quality-of-Life plan for the Chicago Southwest community. Over the course of the evening, speakers highlighted the key goals and strategies of each issue area: anti-violence, economic and retail development, education, health care, housing, immigration, and jobs. At the end of the presentations the audience was asked to stand…

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Staff Changes at SWOP; We say hello and goodbye.

Staff Changes at SWOP; We say hello and goodbye.

After three great years of promoting positive health outcomes at Marquette School as part of the Elev8 program, Shamika Woods has moved back to Cincinnati to be closer to family. Shamika worked to ensure that every student at Marquette was medically compliant, had all their vaccinations, and was able to see a dentist when needed. She was honored last year by Esperanza Health Centers for her work. We will miss her. Jasmine Serrano has joined the SWOP staff to lead…

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Pictures (And Maps) Are Worth a Thousand Words

Pictures (And Maps) Are Worth a Thousand Words

For the past four years, leaders from the Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP), in partnership with United Power and Brinshore Development, have been working to transform 100 vacant buildings into homes in the community. A walk down the 6200 block of south Rockwell or any other block in the target area will give you a feel for how the work is going. Buildings that used to be vacant eyesores are now homes for families. The maps below will also show you how…

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