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It’s Not Normal

Posted On October 20, 2017 ‐ Written By: Erin Vogel ‐ Photos By: Courtney Clinkert

POP—POP-POP-POP-POP The longest 10 seconds of my life. Trauma I can never un-experience. Sounds that still ring through my head. And unfortunately a situation that is normal for too many of the people living in Chicago’s underserved communities. Around 4:30 pm on Friday, September 8th, we were getting ready to close the Peace House for…


Growing up in Englewood

Posted On October 10, 2017 ‐ Written By: Mike Kincaide ‐ Photos By: Olivia Leigh

I sometimes wonder how different my life would be if I hadn’t grown up in Englewood. What if my neighborhood wasn’t surrounded by vacant lots and abandoned buildings? What if most of my neighbors didn’t consist of drug dealers and prostitutes? Imagine going to a actual grocery store down the street to buy foods like…


Real Unity: Breaking Barriers in the Yoga Industry

Posted On October 09, 2017 ‐ Written By: Brittany Norment ‐ Photos By: Zelda Mayer

Three years ago during a great personal depression, I began practicing yoga, emphasis on the practice. If at that time I was told I would eventually train to be a yoga teacher,  it would have been met with a lot of laughter.  Despite my growing love for yoga as a way to relax my body…


Recap: Peace Fest

Posted On September 19, 2017 ‐ Written By: Kirsten Onsgard ‐ Photos By: Kirsten Onsgard

“This is the real Chicago,” said Quentin Mables, co-executive director of I Grow Chicago. “Not what you see on the 7 o’clock news.” Around him, children dove into a bounce house and weaved through the community garden. Hamburgers seared, neighbors met and old friends greeted one another. It was all for I Grow Chicago’s second-annual…


Volunteer Spotlight: Mike Kincaide

Posted On September 04, 2017

Written by Kirsten Onsgard Mike Kincaide has fond memories of playing at street festivals and block parties when he was growing up in Englewood. The St. Rita’s High School alumnus now lives in Andersonville, but he has roots in Englewood and his mother still lives there. But things have changed, he said, and the difference between…


Behind the Program: Peace Fest

Posted On August 26, 2017

Written by Kirsten Onsgard  | Photo by Olivia Leigh Kids deserve a block party. And Englewood deserves to be in a positive spotlight, said Mike Kincaide, who organizes Peace Fest at I Grow Chicago. Now in its second year, Peace Fest is as much a celebration as it is a community impact event, with speakers, resources,…


What are you doing about it?

Posted On August 15, 2017

Below is the reflection of our Junior Board president, Olivia Hodges, following the violence in Charlottesville.    After Ferguson, I was talking to a friend. This friend has devoted her life to public service, both through her work and volunteerism. She was telling me how she was talking to another friend who was going on…


Heart Work

Posted On July 19, 2017

“You stand with the least likely to succeed until success is succeeded by something more valuable: kinship. You stand with the belligerent, the surly and the badly behaved until bad behavior is recognized for the language it is: the vocabulary of the deeply wounded and of those whose burdens are more than they can bear.”…


Quentin Honored as one of Crain’s 20 in their 20s

Posted On May 12, 2017

We are proud to announce that our Co-Executive Director Quentin Mables was selected as one of Crain’s 20 in their 20s for his inspiring work with I Grow Chicago in Englewood. Just a few short years ago, our founder Robbin Carroll stood on the street corner of 64th and Honore, passing out Subway sandwiches and…


Kenya Reflections: Quentin

Posted On May 09, 2017

  In April 2017, four members of our team visited Nairobi, Kenya for a 200-hour Baptiste Yoga teacher training and observation of Africa Yoga Project‘s Shine Center. Through this cultural exchange opportunity, we learned about the tools used in the slums of Nairobi that could transfer to our own communities in Chicago. Our Co-Executive Director, Quentin,…