All posts by awhittler77

Englewood couple opens home as a haven to children of all ages

By Alex Whittler

Quilen and Hannah Blackwell offer a place of refuge to children in an area that often makes headlines for its gun violence and crime rates.

“The Chicago Eco House is an anti-violence strategy and nonprofit that’s focused on using sustainable technologies to invest in the community,” Quilen Blackwell said while a group of kids ate s’mores in his backyard in Englewood, which ranks as the tenth most dangerous Chicago neighborhood.

Those statistics have deterred potential homebuyers in the past, but that’s exactly what drew the Blackwells to Englewood.

With a large tarp welcoming students into their home hanging from a black iron fence, the young married couple said they proudly live and serve through their nonprofit on South Peoria. The Blackwells said they don’t hesitate to offer their home to anyone in the community who needs a haven– especially the nearly 30 kids who are likely to stop by on their way home from school.

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Resist Trump Tuesday protesters to Disney’s Iger: “Let it Go”

By Alex Whittler and Lauren Baker

Americans are reacting to President Trump’s first address to congress. A group of Chicago protesters gathered for their weekly demonstration to give their own address and “hold CEO’s accountable for their actions.”

Each week #ResistTrumpTuesday protesters dedicate demonstrations to a different issue. There is no word yet on what topic the Chicago group will focus on next week.

Photo at top: #ResistTrumpTuesday protesters deliver a “people’s address” before marching to the Disney store on State St. (Alex Whittler/ MEDILL)

Protesters interrupt council meeting, deliver 300 letters to Mayor’s Office in attempt to curb gun violence

By Alex Whittler

It’s still unclear what will become of the city’s unclaimed $15 million of property tax rebate money. Some people have at least one idea of how the funds could combat one of the city’s most infamous issues. Medill reporter Alex Whittler was there as a group of Chicago South and West Siders took their message to City Hall.

Photo at top: Students prepare to deliver 300 letters pleading for anti-gun violence funding to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Office. (Alex Whittler/MEDILL)

ComEd warns of power outages from aluminum Valentine’s Day balloons

By Alex Whittler

ComEd is warning consumers of the dangers of those popular aluminum Valentine’s Day balloons. Last year, nearly 2500 people were left without power because of one.

Photo at top: ComEd reports more than 2500 people were left without power after an aluminum balloon, as shown here, hit a power line. The electric company warns Valentines Day shoppers of the risk. (Alex Whittler/MEDILL)

Obama’s final days in office foreshadow service as civilian

By Alex Whittler

President Obama will hold his final news conference Wednesday, two days before President-Elect Donald Trump is sworn into office.

The conference will likely be the last time Americans hear from the 44th president as a sitting commander in chief, although many view the events from his final days in office as examples of how Mr. Obama will serve the country as a civilian.

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