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Paula Collier

Dreams of equity: Southtown Sustainable Women’s Group lifts up community

Paula Collier, a resident of the Madison Square neighborhood and host of the Southtown Sustainable Women's Group at Seeds of Promise, is addressing racism by empowering women in her community.


Sueños de igualdad: El Grupo de Mujeres del Southtown es una ganancia para la comunidad

Paula Collier, residente del vecindario de Madison Square y anfitriona del Grupo de Mujeres del Southtown en Seeds of Promise, está empoderando a las mujeres de su comunidad a terminar con el racismo. 


Boys can dance, too: Grand Rapids ballet companies encourage all children to take to the stage

Ballet companies throughout Grand Rapids are breaking down negative stereotypes of boys in ballet and are making sure all children have the chance to explore a passion for dance.


Saving the lives of the future: Grand Rapids plays starring role in national health care

To say the healthcare industry is in flux is an understatement. As the field evolves, however, one thing is certain: by continuing to implement new and improve existing technologies, Grand Rapids is at the forefront of innovation in health care.

Alice Johnson

Facing racism: The lasting effects of discrimination in GR's southeast community

Marked by a history of racism and segregation, members of Grand Rapids' southeast communities share the ways this has blocked access to fostering sustainable neighborhoods -- and how they are working to overcome these barriers.


Como el racismo y la segregación deja su huella marcada en la comunidad de sureste de GR

Estigmatizados por una historia de racismo y exclusión, las comunidades del sureste debieron compartir la inaccesibilidad a programas de apoyo como comunidades con recursos propios -- y como ellos están trabajando para conquistar estos limitantes.

Graci Harkema

RapidChat: Graci Harkema

Days after being born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Graci Harkema was placed for adoption at a local orphanage. After being given only 12 to 24 hours to live, she was adopted by her (now) parents. Following her move to Grand Rapids as a child, Harkema has gone on to become one of the city's most passionate leaders, fighting for everything from LGBTQ rights to racial equality and more.

Ferry Farm

Heading home: For many who grew up on the farm, roots run deep

Paul Pridgeon remembers graduating from Central Michigan University and asking himself the question that swirls in the minds of so many recent graduates: now what?


Hidden gems: The coolest trails you've never heard of in West Michigan

From a historic rail line transformed into recreational space to breathtaking views of the Grand River, these are trails you don't want to miss.


Profit and heart: Etsy co-founder to talk business with a conscience in Grand Rapids

Etsy, like most startups, struggled to balance the company's values and outlook with that of venture capital investors’ desire for rapid growth. Co-founder Mathew Stinchcomb stops by Grand Rapids to talk about how the power of B Corps can transform our businesses -- and communities. 


Recruiting, retaining & fostering talent: West Michigan's changing workforce and a desire for place

The culture of work has changed. Rarely do individuals begin and end their careers in the same position, at the same desk or with the same few titles. What does that mean for West Michigan companies looking to recruit and retain talent? Well, for starters, it's a lot about a sense of place.


A place to call home: Well House opens permanent housing for homeless youth

For young adults who are living on city streets, they will soon be able to access permanent housing that is poised to empower the individuals and significantly tackle homelessness in our community. Well House, a Grand Rapids nonprofit, is opening a youth house for individuals ages 18 to 24, and the new space will give young adults the chance to build their lives.

Edye Evans Hyde

Power of truth: Ebony Road Players provides safe space to explore race, identity & ignored histories

The Ebony Road Players and its executive director, Edye Evans Hyde, are pushing the community forward with theater, prompting people to listen, really listen, to stories of racism and injustice that they may not have otherwise known. Or wanted to hear.


Greenhouse to grocery: Stocking stores with year-round Michigan produce

Yes, it's frosty outside. But winter doesn't mean you can't enjoy homegrown Michigan produce this time of year. In fact, it could be as close as your neighborhood grocery aisle.

Melissa Tungl

RapidChat: Melissa Tungl on making yoga all about community, getting rid of the yogi stigma & more

Over the years, we have seen an increasing number of boutique fitness studios pop up in and around Grand Rapids – particularly those which revolve around the ancient practice of yoga. Likewise,it can be somewhat of a status symbol to even be called a ‘yogi.' Trends aside, owner of Seva Yoga, Melissa Tungl, is on a mission to root her studio in the community and make yoga a practice accessible to everyone while removing that aloof yogi stigma. 
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