Greater Saint John AME Church Proclaims #SafestSummerEver2017 in Chicago

CHICAGO – June 28, 2017 – Recently, a group of Englewood residents and members of Greater Saint John AME Church came together to discuss strategies to address the chronic issues of violence impacting our neighborhoods. After much dialogue we decided that we would become renewed activists for promoting a public relations media campaign entitled “ChiLove: Code of Care” as a solution to counter the problems of violence that overwhelmingly narrated by media outlets and residents alike.

Framed simply: Greater Saint John AME Church feels they can change the negative perception of crime and violence that retards the growth of Englewood by influence residents to become apart of their movement to mobilize around the virtue of Love “ChiLove” to our daily thoughts and actions while reflecting on community accountability and individual responsibility through a “Code of Care ” standard that will bring healing within ourselves and the value of human life will spread to others.

Pastor Kevin Andre Brooks, Senior Pastor states “We believe that by promoting “ChiLove:Code of Care” we can deliberately address the issue of violence that silence many of us with fear in our homes and communities. In fact, with a change in mindset and attitude we believe challenging the apathetic culture of “Stop Snitching” by residents along with the police code of silence associated with the tolerance of brutality and crimes committed by their fellow officers.”

By raising awareness around this issue and appealing to our neighbors and district police officers we can start our own comprehensive community policing efforts anchored on residents “Loving Thy Neighbors as Thyself”  as first  community responders and officers building confidence and relations with the community built on the expectation of serving and protecting.

Today and from now on Pastor Kevin Andre Brooks is asking you to Promote ChiLove and Proclaim #safestsummerever2017 #goodinenglewood

Here is what YOU can do:

  • Post this letter and the “ChiLove” logo to your Facebook wall or any social media outlet that you influence i.e. blogs, webpages and texts exchanges. Share it with everyone you know and encourage them to do the same.
  • Commit yourself to hand-writing a ChiLove Letter(s) to neighbors on your block.
  • Join one of many positive anti-Violence movement and organizations in Englewood that inspire Peace Love as an organizing tactic.
  • Practice unlimited ChiLove in your daily life: share a healthy home-cooked meal, plant a garden, smile often, atone for past misunderstandings, be a role model, mentor, donate to a cause, offer forgiveness, sing, dance or write a poem and share at our Monthly Praise in the Park Celebrations in Ogden Park (Schedule Listed Below). July 8 in Ogden Park 6500 S. Racine 10am-2pm (Schedule of Dates Listed Below).  Attend our scheduled Police Community Trust, Truth & Reconciliation Town Hall Meetings. attend our scheduled Police Community Trust, Truth & Reconciliation Town Hall Meetings.
  • Join us in this effort and let’s help to inspire a new feeling of a Greater and Safer Englewood

Chi Love – Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself

To Learn More About The “ChiLove: Code of Care” Campaign and Movement Contact:
R. Baldwin

For Immediate Release
May 8, 2017

What’s Good in Englewood?

A New Day, a New Story and a New “Welcome to Englewood” Landmark Sign Revealed

CHICAGO – May 1, 2017– On Friday, May 12, at 1pm the Englewood community will welcome its first documented “Welcome to Englewood” landmark sign at the corner of 63rd and Yale. The public and media are invited to attend the unveiling. Residents, faith based leaders, elected officials, community partners and stake holders will gather as the community comes together to celebrate this momentous event. The installation of the “Welcome to Englewood” sign marks efforts made by the community to improve the quality of life, safety and beautification of the community.

“As the public drives and walks by this busy intersection of 63rd and Yale, they will now be forever reminded that Englewood is a community worth valuing,” said Jennipher Adkins, Chief Operating Officer of Greater Englewood Community Development Corporation (GECDC).

“In bringing this sign into fruition, the community hopes to restore pride, ownership and safety,” said Rashanah Baldwin, Englewood leader and neighborhood coordinator for Neighborhood Housing Service of Chicago (NHS). “We are committed to making Englewood a community where residents enjoy calling Englewood home.”

In 2016, Baldwin led the process with community partners on gathering input from longtime residents, conducting research and gaining valuable insight on what the sign would look like and where the sign would be placed. In a voting process of different renderings presented by several local artists, the community selected a graphic they felt reflected the history of Greater Englewood. The selected graphic was created by Leonard “GLC” Harris, two-time Grammy Award Winning artist/writer, Chicago native and community leader.

“We deserve to have permanent signs throughout the community which reflect the history of Englewood and welcomes Chicagoan’s to our community,” said Kimberly White, Englewood homeowner.

The “Welcome to Englewood” landmark sign is funded through a generous “Innovation Grant” on behalf of Local Initiatives Support Corporation Chicago (LISC). Working in partnership with the GECDC and Teamwork Englewood, the sign has been one of many ways the community is organizing together; the GECDC currently has site control over the lot in the 20th Ward granted by Alderman Willie Cochran to maintain its upkeep.

The Englewood Quality of Life Plan II, led by Teamwork Englewood and funded by LISC Chicago identifies the landmark sign as an early action project in their “Housing and Public Space Task Force” as well the “Jobs and Economic Development Task Force.” Members of these taskforces identified this as a key strategy to bring gateways and signage to the community in order to restore positive narratives and imagery in Englewood. The goal is to have more of these landmark signs sponsored by community organizations at the boundaries of Englewood.

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