For 28 years, Real Change has challenged ourselves and our city to change.
In the face of housing insecurity and the increasing criminalization of poverty, our journalism and advocacy challenges the status quo to imagine a better future for all our neighbors.
At Real Change, we collaborate to advocate for long-term systems change while addressing the immediate needs of people experiencing homelessness and poverty. Your support makes that work possible.
Celebrate our legacy this year (virtually) to honor 28 years of Real Change. At noon on Sept. 15, you will hear from local journalists, changemakers, vendors and volunteers. Our keynote speaker this year is Renaissance of 350 Seattle, an artist and organizer active in the Black Lives Matter movement and in the wider struggle for Black and Brown liberation since 2014.
In his keynote speech, Renaissance will dig into the criminalization of poverty and how we can show up for our unhoused neighbors.
Follow along on our social media channels (@RealChangeNews) the week of Sept. 13 for daily celebrations. We will be sharing videos of our 2022 award winners, including our Vendors of the Year, Volunteers of the Year, Editorial Excellence recipient and Change Agent.
This annual celebration is a crucial fundraiser for Real Change. We need to raise $175,000 to continue fueling our programs, making change everyday. Every gift makes a difference.
Please donate today to get us to our goal. If you give $250 or more right now, your gift will be DOUBLED by a generous matching fund from our friends at the Lucky 7 Foundation. You will also receive a special gift in the mail.
Challenge yourself to invest in change
Change is at the center of all we do. It’s about momentum, striving and working together to imagine new possibilities. It’s about hope.
Our Vendor Program works to change lives by offering low-barrier opportunity and support services. Hundreds of individuals make a change in their lives just by walking through our doors. Vendors count on Real Change for steady income, support and a hub from which to advocate for their own needs.
Our award-winning newspaper works to change minds. Through powerful writing and art, journalists capture the nuanced experiences of our neighbors living outside, like Associate Editor Tobias Coughlin-Bogue in his column “In Their Own Words.” Campers like John Graham and Susan Fritts-Jackson share their stories, educating us all on the specific difficulties and barriers to securing stable housing.
Our Advocacy Department works to change policy. Through vendor-centered campaigns, we challenge ongoing camp sweeps and fight the criminalization of poverty with community-led solutions that honor the autonomy and dignity of our unhoused neighbors.
Neighbors just like Leroy.
This year’s Change Agent, Leroy, was hit by a driver and seriously injured while riding a bicycle in the SODO neighborhood. As he lay on the ground in pain, police responding to the crash wrote him a ticket for not wearing a helmet instead of citing the driver, who was at fault. Real Change shared a video of the incident, which went viral.
Leroy, a person of color who was living unhoused at the time, explained in testimony to the King County Board of Health (KCBH) that this incident reflected a larger pattern of selective enforcement.
Real Change partnered with local transportation rights groups to advocate for the repeal of the law requiring helmets. In February 2022, the KCBH voted to repeal the law because of the disproportionate enforcement against community members who are Black, Indigenous and people of color as well as people experiencing homelessness.
This year, we honor Leroy’s bravery, which led to the repeal of this law. His challenge of the unjust status quo catalyzed change. Real change.
Grassroots gifts like yours make change possible, be it individual or systems change. Your gift helps transform hearts and minds. Make a gift today of $250 or more and watch it be DOUBLED by a generous matching fund.
Please join us to celebrate 28 years of advocacy, journalism and a caring community.
We are excited to gather together to honor the incredible, hardworking Real Change vendors, award winners and community members just like you.
If you are in a place to make a donation, please support our work at a level that works for you.
Thank you for believing in us. Together, let’s challenge ourselves to change.
Samira Khadar is the development manager for Real Change.
Read more of the Aug. 17-23, 2022 issue.