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Your Black Life: How To Eliminate Poverty (Part 2) — Shannon Joyce Prince

December 18, 2008 1 comment

prince_shannon1Poverty: Policies and Possibilities (Part 2 — Read: Part 1)

By: Shannon Joyce Prince

Contributing Writer – YourBlackWorld.com

Imagine a program that built a childcare center which gave teens construction work experience, used Department of Agriculture funds to pay poor women to cook for poor children, taught poor women to become day care teachers and run day cares, and helped poor women get their GED’s. Imagine this program also provided mortgage counseling and founded a health center that provided forty local women with jobs. Now imagine the program was run almost entirely by black welfare mothers. Such a program did once exist. It was called Operation Life. It was at its peak during the 70’s and 80’s and is detailed in the book Storming Caesar’s Palace by Annelise Orleck.

Operation Life was based on the principle that the poor themselves are the experts on poverty and many current successful programs make that adage their foundation. [...]

Another factor in reducing poverty is looking for creative solutions that solve multiple problems. [...]

For example, many poor neighborhoods have constructed community gardens in vacant lots. In Philadelphia, crime on some blocks dropped 90% after the creation of community gardens [...]

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