Over the past 25 years, much about Seattle has changed, but Real Change is a constant.
We believe in the dignity of direct opportunity. We believe in people finding their voice. And we believe in the power of a caring community.
We have seen how homelessness can degrade and dehumanize. And we have seen the healing power of human connection.
With your support, we have changed thousands and thousands of lives. When you give to our Winter Fund Drive, you help ensure our success for years to come.
I recently sat down with Shawn Wilson, who knows personally the difference that Real Change makes.
When Shawn hit bottom, all he cared about was his next drink. He was painfully alone and had lost all sense of connection.
“When you walk around with nothing, just nothing, each and every day,” he remembers, “you become desperate and confused. You don’t know how to ask for help. You don’t even look at yourself anymore.”
When Shawn found Real Change, he found far more than a means of earning income. Over the past four years, an entire community has seen to his success.
“I like people, but I didn’t like them when I was just lost. Real Change was healing me. I found I could get better.
“My customers helped me to trust. Once they start helping, you start growing. You don’t stay where you were. You begin to understand that what you’re doing is real to them.”
Now, Shawn is in housing and has reconnected with his family, notably, his adoring mom. He looks forward to each day and is fully engaged with life. He credits much of this to the healing community he has found through Real Change.
“Crown Hill is my community now. I know their children, their pets. They celebrate their lives with me. And it’s all thanks to a lot of people who help us out, the support Real Change gets from people I haven’t even met and probably never will.”
Your support of Real Change makes stories like Shawn’s possible. Your support of our Winter Fund Drive helps us to keep growing and improving.
Your gift means that our vendors will keep feeling the love of this community, even when things are hard.
Every year, your support helps 600 vendors like Shawn find community and success.
Our new case manager works to connect vendors with the services they need, whether it’s getting an ID replaced, finding medical support or big or small advocacy while they look for housing. If a vendor is in need, Real Change is here to help.
Year after year, our mission of providing opportunity and a voice while taking action is still gaining ground, and making Seattle a kinder, more compassionate city.
From award-winning journalism that elevates the voices of our community to dedicated advocacy lead by the Vendor Organizing Committee, you can count on Real Change to uplift and empower.
Real Change is reader-supported. Ninety percent of our income is through your grassroots support and paper sales. Our community keeps us strong.
When Shawn Wilson talked about becoming a Real Change vendor, he said, “The hardest thing was learning to accept people’s kindness.”
Shawn was able to embrace that challenge and thrive, with your support.
Please help us reach our $200,000 Fund Drive goal so we can help hundreds of vendors like Shawn.
Your gift supports essential progressive journalism, effective activism and immediate opportunity for those who need it most, and challenges us all to be our better selves.
Thank you for the past 25 years of community support. With your help, we are building a better world one person and one newspaper at a time.
Tim Harris, Founding Director
P.S. Need even more reason to give? When you make a gift of $250 or more, you’ll receive a T-shirt and button (while supplies last).
Tim Harris is the Founding Director Real Change and has been active as a poor people’s organizer for more than two decades. Prior to moving to Seattle in 1994, Harris founded street newspaper Spare Change in Boston while working as Executive Director of Boston Jobs with Peace. He can be reached at director (at) realchangenews (dot) org
Read the full Nov. 20 - 26 issue.
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