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Community & Behavioral Health | Recovery | Social Change


Changing the Conversation

Collin Whelley

Collin Whelley
Collin Whelley, a Senior Analyst at the Center for Social Innovation, has been working in the field of homelessness and poverty for more than 10 years. From a street outreach worker to an academic researcher, Collin has been searching for new ways to address issues related to homelessness and poverty. Collin's current interests include program and best practice implementation and evaluation as well as the politics of social justice.
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Recent Posts

Homeless Memorials: Remembering & Re-dedicating

Homeless Memorial.jpg

For those living in the Northern Hemisphere, the Winter Solstice on December 21 marks the longest night of the year. It has been marked by a rich history of gathering and revelry. Communities traditionally came together to keep a spark of hope alive for a new and brighter tomorrow--literally and metaphorically.

Today, in cities across the country, the Winter Solstice marks a different sort of gathering--one of remembrance, respect, solidarity, and responsibility. We remember those individuals, children, mothers, daughters, sons, and fathers we lost to homelessness and poverty--those we failed to help.

On the Streets, in the Storm

On Tuesday January 27th, as the blizzard went on and most were inside keeping warm, I was reflecting on Jeff’s words and decided to take a walk in the snow. This is what I found.

Monday night during winter storm Juno, in the shadow of one of Boston’s wealthiest neighborhoods, someone stayed behind this dumpster.

In cities and towns around the country, individuals and families seeking shelter and safety out of sight, down alleyways, in abandoned buildings and tunnels, under bridges, on crates in drainage pipes, on our sidewalks and at our very feet have become commonplace. We call this “homelessness,” yet this term is empty because it does not transpose onto our hearts the reality of suffering and resilience that take place. Empathy requires context.