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Goblins and Gremlins of Travel: A Halloween Round-Up

Peter Mandel | Posted 10.31.2016 | Travel
Peter Mandel

The fear of yellow brick: Of seeing the stuff in museums, or monuments -- or maybe just along the edge of a Siena sidewalk. Is this a typical phobia...

Ending Homelessness, Never Bet Against the House: Part Two

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 10.29.2016 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

The days, weeks and months immediately after someone is housed are critical to ensuring that the placement sticks. Absent support, the placement could crater. Someone housed after a long time on the streets might simply walk away from that housing, away from a place of his own, back to the streets.

Vandals Cut 'Black' From Church's 'Black Lives Matter' Sign -- Twice

The Huffington Post | Carol Kuruvilla | Posted 08.12.2015 | Religion

A "Black Lives Matter" sign at a Maryland church was vandalized on Tuesday for the second time in less than a month. The River Road Unitarian Universa...

Jillian Berman

Why I'm Mourning The Death Of A Mall | Jillian Berman | Posted 01.05.2015 | Business

The mall that played an outsize role in my adolescence is now a ghost town. I didn’t really believe that malls were going extinct until I saw my ...

The Greening of a Suburban Downtown

F. Kaid Benfield | Posted 02.28.2015 | Green
F. Kaid Benfield

If planners for Bethesda, Maryland fully realize a conceptual vision now being offered to community leaders and the public, the once-quiet but now-bustling suburb's downtown could become a nationally relevant example of urban sustainability.

Can I Put My Nose in Your Cup?

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 11.09.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

Witnessing raw need can make us feel a range of conflicting emotions: anxious, uncertain, compassion and maybe even slightly guilty. We want to help but may not know whether or how to do so. Those are difficult feelings.

What If Your Safety Net Doesn't Feel Safe?

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 07.28.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

When surrounded by friends and family on whom one can count for support of every kind, it's hard to imagine the downward spiral that can land someone ...

Sometimes, You Just Gotta Get Away (Even If You're Homeless)

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 07.13.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

The conversation shifted to a kind of Yelp-type review of local and distant shelters, evaluating their safety, cleanliness and the competency of their staffs.

I Have No Idea Who Is Sitting Next to You, But You Don't Either

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 07.07.2014 | DC
Amy L. Freeman

I was waiting in a line at a supermarket Tuesday morning when a woman I know only by her first name (Helena) got in line behind me and asked how my jo...

Much Ado About Mayo

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 07.01.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

I write today not just to applaud a bunch of teens who got up early on a Saturday morning to help, without a single request for "service hours," but to underscore the importance of a packet of mayonnaise.

The Moment Lost in a Smile Withheld

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 06.24.2014 | Good News
Amy L. Freeman

I wondered what has happened to her, what people have said (or not said) to or near her, words or glances that have torn at her soul so deeply that she expects nothing but scorn.

Does This Bus Shelter Make Me Look Fat?

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 06.07.2014 | DC
Amy L. Freeman

Last week, I overheard a conversation in which an enormous, middle-aged man -- not just tall, but carrying enough girth to be easily considered morbid...

For Want of a Key, A Life Will Be Squandered

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 06.01.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

Second, well, look back at what I wrote, above, "I unlocked the door to my office." I unlocked my door, just as I had locked my house on leaving for work, unlocked my car to drive to work and locked it again on arriving.

Respecting Someone Living Unsheltered

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 05.10.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

I totally sympathized, wondered what other miserable dominoes that lack of funds would push over. So I didn't blame him when he totally lost it in a room full of people who are actually on his team.

Rats Don't Bite, So Sleep Well?

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 05.03.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

What made it even more appalling than the subject matter itself -- rat bites in your sleep -- was the calm, conversational tones they used to exchange this information with each other, like comparing restaurants or the easiest places to find parking.

5 Truths About Housing Costs In Tech Hubs Like San Francisco

Jed Kolko | Posted 04.08.2014 | Business
Jed Kolko

The Trulia Price Monitor and the Trulia Rent Monitor are the earliest leading indicators of how asking prices and rents are trending nationally and lo...

Dangerously Uninformed: Getting News to the Unsheltered

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 03.15.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

Monday's weather was cold, but I could not sense the dangerous "polar vortex" of sub-zero temperatures that newscasters kept warning would descend on the mid-Atlantic that very night. Not for the first time, I wondered about life on the street.

The Bonds and Bounds of Caring

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 03.11.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

Over time, I expanded my "brother" from my actual family to include my physical neighbors, then various communities, and ultimately, heck, the whole darned planet.

Christmas, Without the Cheer

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 02.23.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

Living on the streets is a miserable, painful existence, fraught with physical and emotional difficulties. Maybe the holidays are the straw that breaks the camel's back. Or maybe they are just the burden of yet another straw.

May Memories of Sugarplums Dance In Their Heads

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 02.15.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

For lots of different reasons, our clients generally are not currently in close contact with their families; if they were, they might not be sleeping on the streets. But they have families, of course, and they have memories of them.

When Parents Are Naughty, Children Aren't Nice (Or: Helping Those In Need Is an Honor, Not a Lesson)

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 02.08.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

Those who are hungry, those who are living unsheltered, those who desperately need what so many of us certainly do take for granted, are not animals in a zoo from which we all can learn. They are human beings who need our attention, resources and support.

A Christmas Story Gone Horribly Wrong: Sometimes There Isn't Even a Manger

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 02.03.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

This December 9th is the due date of a woman I will probably never meet. She lives in a tarpaulin-tent in some woods behind a convenience store, in a Maryland town a few miles north of where I sit right now. Few of our clients are expectant women, but it's not unheard of.

The Saddest List I've Ever Seen

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 01.25.2014 | DC
Amy L. Freeman

Whatever one's religion, the sheer noise of this season must scratch open those wounds. The outpouring of holiday offerings from kind-hearted souls are much-needed band-aids, but our clients have injuries that need stitches or surgery.

When a Front Door Stands Between Life and Death

Amy L. Freeman | Posted 01.25.2014 | Impact
Amy L. Freeman

As I sit down to type this, it's heading towards nine o'clock on a bitterly cold November night; a sylvan moon is sending silver light slanting throug...

Whither Ye Olde Stomping Grounds?

Magda Abu-Fadil | Posted 01.23.2014 | Travel
Magda Abu-Fadil

Not a single pay phone in sight in Washington, D.C. It was a shocking discovery after a seven-year absence from my old stomping grounds. I went vi...