Wednesday, July 31, 2013


Here is a report on a patient at CitySquare's Community Health Services medical clinic:  

Sandra was referred to CitySquare several years ago from the ER at Baylor.  She was treated here and has great health now.  

She volunteered as a translator for our cooking classes and everyone loved her.  The cooking class coordinator wanted to steal her from us.  

Sandra  is one of those young people brought by her parents to the US for a better life.  She attended school and really did well.  She went to school to be a medical assistant and her dream is to be a registered nurse.  She however did not have permission to work in the US and was not eligible for scholarships or loans for college.  She was stuck and unable to progress or work legally.

In the last year there have been changes to the rules affecting people in her situation.  She quickly applied for the Dream Act and completed all the necessary paperwork to get a work permit in the US.  We wrote letters of recommendation for her as we knew her as patient and as a volunteer.  

About a month ago she returned to the clinic to show me her Permission to work ID.  She said the next day she was going to get a driver’s license.  As she sat in my office, she began to cry.  I asked what the matter was and she said I just can’t believe all my dreams are coming true. I have waited so long with no hope,  now everything is changing so fast and it is all good.

She applied for a job at Baylor at our encouragement and she was hired for a full time position.  She will, after a period of time, be able to continue her education with the support of the tuition reimbursement program Baylor has for employees.  We are so proud of what she has accomplished.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Public schools and poverty

Poverty Is What's Crippling Public Education in the U.S.—Not Bad Teachers

Poverty Is What's Crippling Public Education in the U.S.—Not Bad Teachers

Earlier this month in New Zealand, Minister of Education Hekia Parata shared a piece of knowledge that has become common the world over. In the Southland Times, “Experts have found that four consecutive years of quality teaching eliminated any trace of socio-economic disadvantage.”
The source of this is an American economist by the name of Eric Hanushek, a professor at Stanford University, who has been spreading this for the past several years. According to Hanushek, "Good teachers are ones who get large gains in student achievement for their classes; bad teachers are just the opposite."
He looks at the distribution of student test scores, and imagines that if we could fire the teachers who are associated with the lowest 10 percent or so, then we would make huge gains. This is the theory behind a great deal of the push for 21st century K-12 education reform in the US.  In order to identify and efficiently dispatch these slackers, we need national standards, and rigorous tests aligned to them.
This has led reformers to advocate that we:
  • Test students more often, so we can measure learning incrementally. Test students in every subject, and at every grade level—even kindergarten, so that all teachers can be properly judged.
  • Eliminate barriers to firing the "bad teachers" who get low scores, so due process and seniority protections have to go.
  • Create new evaluation plans that give significant weight to "value added" measures drawn from test scores, for both teachers and administrators.
Hanushek has also argued, by the way, that more money won’t help schools succeed, nor will small class size. The teacher is the only variable worth targeting. Unions are a problem to the extent to which they make it difficult to quickly fire teachers identified as ineffective.
But the real world is proving to be a difficult place for Hanushek’s theories to be verified. No school has ever replicated the results predicted by his "four great teachers in a row" theory. In fact, there is no real research to support the idea that we can improve student achievement this way—it is all based on extrapolations.
And in fact, new data shows that in the three large urban school districts where these reforms have been given full rein, the results are actually worse than in comparable districts that have not gone this route.
Some of the key findings from the Economic Policy Institute’s April report:
  • Test scores increased less, and achievement gaps grew more, in “reform” cities than in other urban districts.
  • Test-based accountability prompted churn that thinned the ranks of experienced teachers, but not necessarily bad teachers.
  • School closures did not send students to better schools or save school districts money.
Most importantly:
  • The reforms missed a critical factor driving achievement gaps: the influence of poverty on academic performance.
This last point is crucial. This attention to the supposedly pivotal role teachers play in student success comes at a time when the number of children in poverty has been on the rise. According to a study in 2011 (pdf), one school in five was considered high poverty, up from one in eight in the year 2000. Another study showed that "many high-poverty schools receive less than their fair share of state and local funding… leav(ing) students in high-poverty schools with fewer resources than schools attended by their wealthier peers."

While conservative economists such as Hanushek wish to focus our attention on "bad teachers," in actuality by far the largest factor affecting school performance is family income. In fact, the achievement gap between rich and poor has grown to be twice as large as the black/white performance gap in America.
Teachers are important, and of course we want to recruit the most expert and brightest possible, and give them lots of support. But the expansion of tests, and efforts to make teacher jobs depend on ever-rising scores, are turning our schools into test preparation factories.
Hanushek’s ideas have been driving a vast school reform project, which has been underwritten by the largest philanthropies on earth—starting with the Gates and Walton foundations. Now that this project is a decade old, and showing little signs of success, the time has come for a major reappraisal.
Rather than vesting our trust in tests to identify and weed out the worst teachers, why not invest some confidence in these teachers themselves, and empower them to engage in peer observation and growth through proven programs like Peer Assistance and Review? These programs feature experienced teacher coaches working with peers who have been identified as struggling. This has been found to be an effective way to strengthen teachers—and remove those who are unable to improve.
And how about some direct action to reduce the extreme income gap between wealthy and poor? An increase in the minimum wage would provide increased stability to millions of families, which would help children focus on their studies instead of where their next meal will come from. Most schools have cut nurses, librarians and counselors, at the same time we are expanding our investment in measurement systems.
So I offer this warning to the people down under and beyond. This misguided emphasis is no more likely to work there than it has in the US—unless of course, New Zealand truly is “opposite land,” where hot snow falls up.
This post originally appeared on Quartz, an Atlantic partner site.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Friday, July 26, 2013

Street stuff. . .

Thursday on "the Corner" turned out extremely hot and humid.  

We enjoyed the presence of some guests who came to "hang out"--a couple of young business people with an idea for locating a manufacturing facility in the S. Dallas/Fair Park area; six CitySquare team members besides myself.  Then of course, the "parade" of scores of homeless friends who passed by, took advantage of the ice water and the conversation.

People seemed exceptionally weak today:

  • A sixty-year-old man with severe glaucoma which creates blindness that he can't afford to treat
  • A chronically homeless woman who has become a regular at "the Corner" suffering from what may be walking pneumonia
  • Several men and women with physical and psychological disorders who need treatment and can't seem to get it
  • A woman who graduated from an overcoming drug abuse program but who needs housing desperately
  • Several folks who went through our housing enrollment process who need housing so badly
  • Hungry, hungry people
  • Hot, tired, discouraged people
  • People asking again and again for work
  • A friend who is a chronic inebriate, but a friend who blessed me again, as he always does
  • A friend whose 90-year-old mother came by with his sister--he hadn't seen them in months--tearful
My buddy Joe, when asked by one of our staff members if we could help him, instructed the "people helper" with his ckipboard that "I'm taking over the conversation."  

Joe made my staff guy sit down.  He then said to him, "Sir, may I help you?  We have cold water if you'd like some."

Our staff guy answered wisely, "Yes, I'd love some water."

Joe retrieved a bottle of water and delivered it to his new friend with flourish.  

"There you are, sir," Joe declared.  "May I help you in some other way?"

The entire production was to drive home the point that being asked if you need help again and again gets really old, especially when you know you could help yourself and anyone else if you had the chance provided by the resources.

Worn out by people offering to "help" you.  There is a new notion, but one so true.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Donor concern: Hatred? Really?

Rev. Gerald Britt published another compelling essay in The Dallas Morning News yesterday.  His comments focused on the tragic Trayvon Martin incident.  I hope you'll read and consider his thoughts here.

I received the following email from a person who has been a long-time CitySquare donor.  I found it amazing and thoroughly disappointing.   Here's what he said along with my reply and his final word:

Trayvon Martin's killing brought on a lot of debate, some healthy and constructive, some unhealthy and destructive.  Gerald Britt's article in this morning's paper is the most hate-filled, irrational article I have seen from either side of the issue.  Take me off of your lists.  I can't support an organization that is actively promoting hate in our community.

Signed his name

Thank you for contacting me with your opinion about Rev. Britt’s editorial.

Frankly, your reaction is surprising to me.  I can’t find the hatred to which you refer anywhere in the article.  It would be helpful to me if you could elucidate more specifically to what you are referring.  I would love to talk to you by phone or face-to-face, as I am sure Gerald would as well. 

As I have considered the entire case, my question is why didn’t young Trayvon Martin fall under the protection of the “stand your ground” law in Florida?  He was pursued by an armed stranger.  If he “stood  his ground” in his own defense, how could he be blamed and how could an armed assailant be declared “not guilty.” 

Again, please direct me to the hatred or to the irrationality of Gerald’s article.  I really need your help on this one.

Best regards,


Thanks Larry,  That's all I needed to know.  If that article speaks for City Square, we're done.    

Signed his name

I'm trying folks, really, I am.  But, I can't see or hear the "hatred."  

Can you?  

The fact that we can't have a sensible conversation is a huge tip off that we have a major problem about race and culture in this nation.  


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Poverty, middle class and the cost of living. . .

This just in from The Huffington Post:
The Economic Policy Institute has just updated their cost-of-living budgets to reflect how much a family needs to earn to get by in 2013.
Looking at over 600 locations and estimating community-specific costs, EPI found that families need more than twice the amount of the federal poverty line to have a secure yet modest living standard.
"Our family budget calculations show that the real costs for families to live modest -- not even middle class -- lives are much higher than conventional estimates show and virtually impossible for families living on minimum-wage jobs," said Elise Gould, the Economic Policy Institute director of health policy research.
Read more here.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Out of poverty via hard work? Not so fast, buddy!

[We've always thought that the way out of poverty is hard work.  Not so fast there.  The way out of poverty is hard work at a living wage job.  Those jobs aren't nearly as available as many of us surmise.  In fact, more and more people are working hard and slipping deeper into poverty.  It's more accurate to say that the way out of poverty is two, full-time jobs!  Read the following report.  You'll see what I mean. LJ]

McDonald's Can't Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage

In a financial planning guide for its workers, the company accidentally illustrates precisely how impossible it is to scrape by on a fast food paycheck.

 Well this is both embarrassing and deeply telling. In what appears to have been a gesture of goodwill gone haywire, McDonald's recently teamed up with Visa to create a financial planning site for its low-pay workforce. Unfortunately, whoever wrote the thing seems to have been literally incapable of imagining of how a fast food employee could survive on a minimum wage income.

As ThinkProgress and other outlets have reported, the site includes a sample budget that, among other laughable assumptions, presumes that workers will have a second job.

Read the entire report here

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Throwing different kinds of parties. . .

Luke 14:12-14

New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
12 He said also to the one who had invited him, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid. 13 But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind.14 And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

1.  Who do we normally invite to our parties?  Why so? 

2.  What happens when we do?  Any surprises?  

3.  What might happen if we threw different kinds of parties with different "guest lists"?  What would that be like?  What would be uncomfortable?  Why?  What would be positive?  Why?

4.  Where does "repayment" take place in the work of compassion and justice?

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Arkansas and the Ozarks

Ran across this photo of the look out from Petit Jean Mountain across the Arkansas River valley.

Enjoyed my years as a student in Arkansas and at Harding College (now University).

Lots of beauty there, and so many good people.

I love the hills and foothills of Arkansas!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Typical days in inner city Dallas

Thought I'd just document some of what I've been up to the last three days at CitySquare according to my calendar.


7:30 a.m. Breakfast with a board member and representatives from building owners across the street to discuss how we might help with their leasing processes and how they might support our work.

8:30 a.m. Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance Executive Committee conference call.

10:00 a.m. CitySquare Executive Management meeting.

11:30 a.m. Meeting with attorney from Legal Aid of NW Texas to discuss collaboration with CitySquare's LAW Center.

12:30 p.m. "Finish Out" meeting regarding CitySquare's new Opportunity Center.

2:00 p.m.  Meeting with partners on the Cottages at Hickory Crossing project.

3:30 p.m. Met with Homeless Outreach Team to discuss how presence at "The Corner" might be a source of referrals for permanent supportive housing.


10:00 a.m.  Covenant group meeting with other ministers in residency

1:30 p.m.  Met with Dallas Public School executive director for college and career readiness

3:00 p.m.  Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance Public Policy Committee meeting


10 a.m.  Met with chair person of the Dallas Development Fund to discuss specific challenge related to our New Markets Tax Credit award for the Opportunity Center.  Included in the conversation were point people on the Opportunity Center development project.

10:45 a.m.  Conferred with two key management leaders to discuss unusual opportunity in South Dallas-Fair Park that would involve re-purposing a church in decline.

11:30 a.m.  Met with a young community analyst from a  partner non-profit organization who is working on public education here in Dallas.

2:00 p.m. Met with staff at CitySquare's Community Health Services to discuss more effective community outreach to grow our family practice in South Dallas-Fair Park.

3:00 p.m. Participated in National Immigration Grassroots Call hosted by the United Methodist Church.

3:45 p.m. Discussed our usual summertime financial challenges and began to plot a pathway through the worsening "tough patch."  Praying for new and regular donors to step forward to help us continue our work among so many low-income neighbors.

4:00 p.m.  Met with leader in a local church who is determined to mobilize on-going support for CitySquare while calling her church to meaningful community service and advocacy re public policy.

Throughout each day observed, met with, visited with countless persons who live in the CityWalk building here at CitySquare.  Visited with folks on the street in South Dallas.  People are in various states of difficulty and progress.

What an amazing place to work!

Monday, July 15, 2013

The essay that follows is a mind-twister for certain!  What you read may surprise you, unless you have a degree in public health.  Much food for thought on how to intervene for life and health in the really tough parts of a city like mine.  Reactions, as always, welcomed!

Why We Need to Treat America's Poorest Neighborhoods Like Developing Countries

The average life expectancy in Japan right now, home to one of the healthiest, longest-living populations in the world, is about 83 years. That's four years longer than in the United States, a decade longer than in much of North Africa, and as many as 30 years longer than some war-torn parts of the world like Sierra Leone.  
These global patterns are well-known, but we seldom look at our own communities in the same way.
"Most people appreciate at a country level that there are huge disparities in health between the U.S. and, for example, countries in Africa," says David Fleming, the public health director and health officer for Seattle and King County. "I think what is not as obvious to most people is that you don’t need to go any further than your front door, and most of us are living in communities where those same profound differences occur across much smaller geographic areas."
In fact, that area may span the distance of a stop or two on the subway, or another exit off the highway. In New Orleans, for instance, a couple of miles down Interstate 10 can mean the difference in 25 years in life expectancy. . . .click here to read more.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Eternal Lamp

The constant sun breaks through familiar shade trees,
My canopy bed of leaves, branches and damp heat
Cannot block the rising of this eternal lamp.

Once on the rise, the heat yields to nothing, to no one
In the task of warming the ground and radiating concrete,
My home in this unforgiving city.

My daily trek begins today, early before many rustle,
As always, somehow seeking food, water and a hassle-free day
Building against hunger, thirst and law enforcement.

The brilliant sun has not been informed of my
Criminal life and status in this city of great muchness,
Shining down on us all, even on me, one rejected.

Living in such blinding light, yet I remain unnoticed by most,
As if I am not here; But the salty sweat on my face
Reassures me that I am present indeed.

No matter how hot, this light, my friend,
The One with hot fierceness refusing not to
Turn its unfailing light on ME!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Summer hunger and nutrition

Watch this report on CitySquare's "Food on the Move" program this summer in Austin, Texas.

 We're also delivering meals in Dallas and Houston. In addition to the meals, we provide organized physical fitness activities for low-income children.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Down, but not out!

Thanks to historian, Michael Beschloss for this photo of Lou Gehrig after being knocked out by inside fastball that struck him over right eye--exhibition game June 1934: .
Of course, Gehrig got up and continued his amazing career until he was knocked out by the onset of what became known as Lou Gehrig's disease--ALS. 
Life is like this photo in many ways. 
Knocked down. 
Knocked out. 
Set back.
How one responds to the painful, tough times determines a great deal about the quality and fabric of a life. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Good News for CitySquare AmeriCorps Team!

DATE: July 5, 2013
CONTACT: Elizabeth Darling, 512-287-2062,
OneStar Foundation Announces AmeriCorps Grants to Texas Organizations
2,126 AmeriCorps members to meet state and local needs
Austin, TX – OneStar Foundation announced today that 22 organizations in Texas have received AmeriCorps*State grants from the Corporation for National and Community Service. 
The grants will support 2,126 AmeriCorps members across the state who will serve as in-school, after-school and summertime teachers, tutors and mentors, provide intensive college access and success services, engage in adult and early literacy interventions, participate in early childhood development programs, distribute food to economically disadvantaged children and families, engage children in daily physical activity, assist with case management for the homeless, recruit hundreds of volunteers, and respond to disasters throughout the state.
OneStar Foundation will distribute more than $12.3 million in funding to organizations selected in a highly competitive statewide and national process. 
“National service is an essential part of the solution to many of the social challenges facing our Texas communities,” said Elizabeth Darling, President/CEO. “These AmeriCorps members will meet pressing local needs and strengthen Texas as they develop civic and leadership skills that can last a lifetime.”
The current year’s AmeriCorps grant cycle was highly competitive, due to the strong and growing demand by organizations seeking AmeriCorps resources. Demand is also strong from individuals wanting to serve. CNCS received a record-breaking 582,000 AmeriCorps applications in 2011, a dramatic increase from the 360,000 seen in 2009. 
"AmeriCorps members are improving the lives of millions of citizens and having a positive and lasting impact on the toughest challenges facing our communities,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “I congratulate these organizations for their strong applications in a highly competitive year. Thanks to the dedicated service of AmeriCorps members, these organizations will increase their reach and impact on meeting local needs.”
The grants advance the priorities of the bipartisan 2009 Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act and focus AmeriCorps resources on six key service areas: disaster services, economic opportunity, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures, and veterans and military families.
On a national level, AmeriCorps engages 80,000 Americans of all ages and backgrounds in service to meet critical needs. Members serve through more than 14,000 organizations in rural and urban communities throughout the nation. Among other accomplishments, AmeriCorps members last year mobilized 3.4 million community volunteers, and tutored, mentored or served more than 3.5 million disadvantaged youth.
Since 1994, more than 775,000 Americans have provided more than 1 billion hours of service to their communities and country through AmeriCorps. In 2012, 1,964 AmeriCorps members served at 20 programs across the state of Texas in the fields of Education, Economic Opportunity, Healthy Futures, Environmental Stewardship, and Veterans & Military Families. Members provided 2.3 million hours of service and earned $7.4 million in Segal Education Awards to further their own education and repay student loan debt after serving. The 20 AmeriCorps*Texas programs received $12,111,429 in federal AmeriCorps funding, and leveraged an additional $9,766,781 in match funding.
Below is a listing of 2013 AmeriCorps grants in Texas:
  • Amarillo ISD, $285,430 to support 55 AmeriCorps Members
  • American YouthWorks, $260,000 to support 20 AmeriCorps Members
  • AVANCE, Inc. El Paso Chapter, $930,960 to support 74 AmeriCorps Members
  • Breakthrough , $330,013 to support 106 AmeriCorps Members
  • CitySquare, $1,142,953 to support 304 AmeriCorps Members
  • City Year, Inc. , $1,476,300 to support 111 AmeriCorps Members
  • College Forward, $965,655 to support 75 AmeriCorps Members
  • Communities in Schools of Central Texas, $711,044 to support 96 AmeriCorps Members
  • Communities in Schools of the Heart of Texas, $279,168 to support 48 AmeriCorps Members
  • Front Steps, $403,000 to support 31 AmeriCorps Members
  • Harris County Department of Education, $326,618 to support 32 AmeriCorps Members
  • Literacy Coalition of Central Texas, $330,592 to support 32 AmeriCorps Members
  • Project GRAD, $244,353 to support 25 AmeriCorps  Members
  • Project Transformation, $477,984 to support 115 AmeriCorps Members
  • Reading Partners, $370,500 to support 30 AmeriCorps Members
  • SA Youth, $265,421 to support 40 AmeriCorps Members
  • Schulenburg Weimar In Focus Together, $282,830 to support 41 AmeriCorps Members
  • Teach for America, $950,000 to support 634 AmeriCorps Members
  • Travis County Dept. of Health and Human Services and Veterans Service, $301,696 to support 32 AmeriCorps Members
  • University of North Texas, $466,436 to support 83 AmeriCorps Members
  • The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College, $265,892 to support 40 AmeriCorps Members
  • University of Texas at Austin | Charles A. Dana Center, $1,330,000 to support 106 AmeriCorps Members
OneStar Foundation is the Governor-designated National Service Commission in Texas and administers the AmeriCorps*State grant program. The Governor-appointed Board members oversee the legal and policy governance of the AmeriCorps*Texas program portfolio. OneStar Foundation connects partners and resources to build a stronger nonprofit sector in Texas. Learn more at
AmeriCorps is a national service program administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency that engages more than 5 million Americans in service each year and administers United We Serve, the President’s call to service.  Individuals can learn about available opportunities and apply online by visiting


Tuesday, July 09, 2013

A "Safety" Notice at a Christian Seminary

[Received this from a friend at a major private university with a  Christian theological seminary attached to it.  Maybe I'm missing something here???  This is advice communicated to students who are studying to be Christian leaders and ministers.

My friend, who shared the notice with me, responded in this way:  "i reckon, then, that the disciples of the Lord Jesus in this place have no ministry to a homeless human being struggling for existence in Indianapolis in this hellbent twenty-first century. We may simply consign him to the mercies of the [University] Police and the [state named] plutocracy. May God have mercy."

Indeed, Lord, have mercy on us all! This, in the shadow of a theological seminary?  It happens all the time here in Dallas in the shadows of many a Christian edifice where folks are called to join in grand entertainment.  Perchance we see the basis for the anemia of the church in the world today?  Luke 16:19ff????  Does anyone “see” this man, this child of God?  This “Jesus”? How welcome would persons like this man be in your church?]


We have been alerted that in the late nights and early mornings near the [seminary named] apartments at the corner of [name of] street and [name of ] Avenue, a male 5’8-5’9” with a thin build is going through the trash there at the apartments.  We also have reason to believe that this person is homeless and could be sleeping in bushes between our apartment buildings.  You are advised to contact [university name] Police at [phone number] or call local police at 911 if you spot this individual or any other suspicious individuals. 

[University name] Police is aware of this report and have been providing extra patrols this area and areas around our campus.  Please be aware that you may see police officers on foot with flashlights patrolling these areas as well. 

[Seminary name] students, staff and faculty should also be alert and aware of your surroundings and what is going around you.   If you notice anything suspicious, a car that looks out of place, a person wandering around the parking lot or building or anything out of the ordinary, please contact the [seminary name]  Facilities Maintenance or the [university name] police.  Those numbers are [phone number] (Facilities Maintenance), [Phone number] ([university name] Police emergency) and [phone number] (university name Police non-emergency).  If you are the victim of a crime, call the police first and then Facilities.  We all must work together to make [seminary name] a safe place to live, work and study.   

Stay safe!
Director of Facilities Management

Monday, July 08, 2013

An under-appreciated reality crushing our neighbors

In a ranking of the median wealth of its citizens, the United States comes in 27th in the world. Fifteen countries have a median worth of their citizens more than double that of the United States. The median wealth of a United States citizen is only $38,786. These numbers point up the growing challenge of basic household asset poverty. The long recognized measures of extreme poverty remain much lower, but the impact of these numbers from our neighbors just up the economic rung unsettle anyone who is paying attention to the state of our society.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Thursday, July 04, 2013

We must never forget the message of "the Lady" at our gates

The New Colossus
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

American Hero!

WASHINGTON (RNS) Frederick Douglass, whose seven-foot bronze statue was unveiled at the U.S. Capitol Wednesday (June 19), is known as the father of the civil rights movement. But the 19th-century abolitionist and former slave was also a licensed preacher.

“We do this not only to honor a giant, but also to remind one another of how richly blessed we are that such a man lived to prove that courage and ambition are not gifts of status but gifts from God,” said House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.
Click here to read entire report. 

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Fabulous Diana Ross Partners with CitySquare for 25th Anniversary Celebration!!!

How do you celebrate 25 years of fighting poverty in Dallas for an organization that assisted nearly 70,000 people last year? We have just the event!

CitySquare's A Night To Remember featuring
the legendary Diana Ross

Help us prove there "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" in our efforts to fight poverty by clicking the buttons below for ticket and sponsorship information. All proceeds support the programs and services at CitySquare. With your help, we can feed the hungry, heal the sick, house the homeless, and renew hope in the heart of our city.

To become a Sponsor click here!

To purchase tickets click here!

Monday, July 01, 2013

Low wage realities. . .

[Many of us don't understand the plight of the working poor in the United States today.  The fact is most of us work.  And, most poor people work.  As a result, millions of our neighbors don't earn enough to provide even the basics for themselves and their families.  We face this harsh reality every day here at CitySquare.  When I saw the following clip from Bill Moyers, it connected for me.  The fact is our national programs that assist the working poor turn out to be wonderful investments in our people.  And, take it from me, far too many of our people need the hand up.  Watch the program and let me know what you think.]