Year: 2014

Commentary: Durham and Carrboro: Two hearts, two towns, are better than one

By Dylan Howlett

December 3, 2014

A story of greater consciousness, of a longer social antenna, begins, rather morbidly, with an entombed pharaoh. The credit for this haphazard beginning lies with Gwendolyn Payne, a 16-year-old junior at Durham’s Hillside High School. She interns at The Durham VOICE on behalf of Partners for Youth Opportunity, a nonprofit mentorship program that extends academic […]

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Durham dives into education discussion

By Sarah DeWeese

December 2, 2014

Every child is a sponge seeking knowledge, whether that is in a classroom or not. “You’re expected to come to work with an unbiased mind and teach a classroom full of sponges because children are just sponges. SO that in itself is an issue,” said Heather Lee, 30 year old member of Durham. The Kettering […]

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Habitat digs deeper relationship in Northeast Central Durham

By Robert Berges

When the family is working hard to buy a house, how can the children contribute? By planting blueberries! At least that was the answer Saturday afternoon Nov. 15 at the Angier Avenue Garden, where Durham Habitat for Humanity was testing a new program that will help children improve the neighborhood and buy houses. They will […]

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TROSA’s lots offer Christmas trees for a cause

By Zack Newbauer and Jordan Bailey

Years of success for Holidays by TROSA have encouraged the Durham nonprofit to expand this year’s offering of holiday trees, as this year a ninth location has been added at 3500 N Roxboro St. TROSA—Triangle Residential Options for Substance Abusers, Inc.—is a two-year residential substance abuse recovery program that offers vocational training for its 505 […]

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Summit Kicks Off Durham’s Work on Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative

By Mark Lihn

In September, President Obama challenged communities to address opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color, and now Durham is responding. Obama’s initiative, My Brother’s Keeper (MBK), encourages communities to create strategies to help all young men reach their full potential in college or career paths, according its White House website. The Nov. […]

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CASA housing development unveiled for eleven veterans experiencing homelessness

By Mary Alta Feddeman

On the coldest day of 2014 thus far, a few hundred people gathered on the morning of Nov. 18 to celebrate the completion of a new housing development: the Denson Apartments for Veterans. The construction of the apartment building, located at 1598 Sedgefield St., was overseen and managed by CASA, an organization that builds low-cost […]

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Stakeholders gather at ABC’s annual meeting

By Zack Newbauer

November 13, 2014

The reentry into society following incarceration presents an array of challenges, but the most fundamental hurdle is housing – a key issue at this year’s Antioch Builds Community, Inc. annual meeting. “Right now housing is the biggest issue we are facing,” said Alesha Jones-Garrett, regional former offender specialist at the North Carolina Department of Commerce […]

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Commentary: Homelessness in Durham: Why it persists and how the city is fighting it

By Caitlin Ball

November 12, 2014

Editor’s Note: Staff writer Caitlin Ball was one of the photographers participating in the Oct. 10 Project Homeless Connect Durham event in which VOICE photographers made portraits for 55 people attending the support event at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. After spending the better part of the day meeting, talking to and photographing many Durham residents […]

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Durham Divas prove you are never too old to play

By Robert Berges

Durham Senior Divas cheerleading squad is out to get you moving, and thinking positive. The mantra of the seven-time North Carolina Senior Games gold medalists is simple: “You don’t stop playing because you grow old; you grow old because you stop playing,” But what keeps the Divas playing is that they have so much fun […]

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Kidznotes: Growing bigger and brighter in Durham

By Sarah DeWeese

“Hands Up! Instruments Up!” Instructor Omar Ruiz-Lopez says to the group of young musicians. The section of Kidznotes waits expectantly for Ruiz-Lopez to raise his hands before raising their violins and playing the first note of the song of the day: “Fiddles on Fire.” Kidznotes, a free orchestral community program for children K-8 grade, is […]

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Unsung heroes of Housing for New Hope

By Jessica Coates

Rapid Rehousing Program Coordinator Cynthia Harris believes that affordable housing should be available to everyone. “We’re not afraid to talk to anyone,” Harris says. “And when people call us, even if we can’t help them, we’re willing to give them resources to put them in the right direction. We don’t want them to leave New […]

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New Initiative REAL Durham Fights Poverty

By Mark Lihn

An initiative to help those in poverty fight it and its negative effects has come to Northeast Central Durham. REAL (Relationships Equipping Allies and Leaders) Durham is a collaboration between a host of agencies: End Poverty Durham, Durham Congregations in Action, East Durham Children’s Initiative, Healthy Families Durham and the Durham Economic Resource Center, REAL […]

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Genesis Home: the people making a difference behind the scenes

By Andrew Forrest

  Individuals experiencing homelessness. That’s the phrase Tasha Melvin prefers over “homeless people,” because as she puts it, “homeless people” carries with it the connotation of being permanent. Melvin is the volunteer coordinator at Genesis Home, a temporary housing facility located at 300 N. Queen St. near downtown Durham. Melvin coordinates the home’s Circles of […]

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Self-run recovery houses help community overcome addiction

By Jordan Bailey

  After being hit by a series of life events – including a divorce and the deaths of a few loved ones – that drove Durham resident Dawn Sims to start drinking again after nine years of sobriety, Sims knew she needed a new strategy for getting clean and staying sober. Sims said that was […]

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Tiny lending library brings joy to neighborhood

By Mary Alta Feddeman

On the white picket fence at the corner of Hart and South Driver streets, there hangs a yellow wooden box with a metal roof and a glass door. This bright box is filled with novels and children’s stories, and it reads in bold purple letters on each side, “READ BOOKS.” On the front, a sign […]

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Emily K Center builds a stronger generation

By Ayannah Crawley

Twin sisters Oyinka and Oyinda Ajasa are only in the 7th grade, but they’re already planning to attend Duke Medical School together. “I want to be a pediatrician,” said Oyinda, a student at Rogers-Herr Middle School. Her sister also wants a career in medicine. “I want to be an oncologist,” Oyinka said. They both plan […]

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Fayetteville Elementary makes sure no child is left behind

By Amber Buford

With winter right around the corner, Fayetteville Elementary School hopes to help every student in need. “We try to make sure no student is forgotten and has food, warm clothing, and any other school materials they need,” said Charlotte Wilson, the school’s assistant principal. The school has a long list of charities that donate clothes, […]

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Activist moves ministry to new location

By Leah Montgomery and Melquan Ganzy

Julia Ross Harrelson grow up in Hurdle Mills, N.C., on a farm with more than 114 acres of tobacco, squash, snap peas and anything else you could think of. The youngest of eight children, Harrelson had the task of collecting wood for the stove and gathering water from the spring near the farm. Her father […]

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