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Serving the poor in Milwaukee has become a growth industry

Friedens Community Ministries is at a strategic point of extended growth throughout the city of Milwaukee, an issue that points to the increased need and failed social policies that are not alleviating the problems of poverty. Over the last four years, Friedens has steadily increased the number of people served, growing from 30,000 to 50,000 individuals annually. The organization’s paid staff has grown from 2 to 3, plus 1.5 AmeriCorps interns. Volunteerism grew from around 600 to over 2,500 participants since last year. Charitable contributions have also increased with the pace of poverty, as the network of food pantries...

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Audit shows Anti-Semitic incidents on the rise across Wisconsin

The Jewish Community Relations Council of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation recently completed its 2017 Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents, focused on the greater Milwaukee area, but including incidents from across the State of Wisconsin. The audit tracks the continuation of an increase of overall incidents, and of particular concern is a sharp rise in incidents categorized harassment, threats or assault. All incidents in the report were corroborated, and it does not include unconfirmed reports. “The proliferation of hate via social media is a phenomenon that affects us all, including the companies that provide social media platforms, legislators who set guidelines,...

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New public art installation coming to Black Cat Alley in April

The Milwaukee community will be able to view the unveiling of a new mural in Black Cat Alley on April 20 and 21. The East Side Business Improvement District (BID) in cooperation with Wallpapered City, a local agency specializing in public art, has issued a Call for Artists inviting any Wisconsin-based artists over the age of 18 to submit their designs. The winning Artist or Crew will receive an honorarium of $2,000 plus materials. The new mural will be installed on a north-facing segment of the back wall of the Oriental Theater, near the intersection of Kenilworth and Prospect...

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City of Milwaukee and Walnut Way partner on green infrastructure projects for sustainable communities

Walnut Way recently announced that the organization was awarded $150,000 of strategic funding, and had been invited to partner with the Resilient Communities program from the Institute for Sustainable Communities (IRC). The City of Milwaukee’s ECO Department was also included in the grant, to increase green infrastructure projects in the area. ISC will provide Walnut Way with customized technical assistance, access to ISC’s large and growing national network of sustainability and resilience practitioners, connections with peer organizations, and strategic funding to expand and accelerate our work on energy and water resilience. “Over the past 18 months, this partnership has...

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“Kawaii culture” of Anime brings $3.8M economic impact to Milwaukee

Anime Milwaukee (AMKE) hosted its 11th annual event over three days at the Hyatt Regency Milwaukee and Wisconsin Center, welcoming more than 10,000 guests from the area, around the country, and overseas. Wisconsin’s largest Anime and Japanese cultural event lasted from February 16 to 18. It was expected to bring $3.8 million in revenue to the city, according to an economic impact study by the Greater Milwaukee area’s convention & visitors bureau, VISIT Milwaukee. Held at the Wisconsin Center, all three floors of the facility were fully booked full with vendors, artists, video game entertainment, programming, and special events....

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Can an Anime convention do more to desegregate Milwaukee in a weekend than nonprofits do all year?

“I like being here, and the fact that manga books express my lifestyle as normal. If you see something in books all the time, it has to be normal. That’s how it is in Japan, but America doesn’t understand this reality. And most people here are scared of it. So we come to this anime convention as a refuge from how society views us. There should be events like this in the city all the time.” – Christina Sierra Two years ago at Anime Milwaukee 2016, the Milwaukee Independent explored an observation that had avoided public attention, “How anime...

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