Features

Longform BC Buddhism

Battle Creek SokokuJi Buddhist Temple expands outreach through planned Community Mindfulness Center

Buddhism in Battle Creek has been growing, thanks to the influence of BC native Kyoun Sokuzan, abbot of SokukuJi Buddhist Temple. SokukuJi is building a Community Mindfulness Center to serve residents interested in mindfulness and meditation.

Feature Story Soldiers Songs and Voices

How songwriting helps Kalamazoo-area veterans connect and healSoldiers Songs and Voices

"I was walking down a dusty, stony road. Had my head up in the clouds, and my feet were in gravel (gravel)."

Feature Story Sacred Earth

Root Solutions: Climate optimism over climate doomerism can inspire the changes we need to make

"And if we can incentivize enough choices towards sustainability, then we can cut back on air pollution and all these extra costs that everyone's paying. We can make our world more sustainable and livable and healthier and fun."

Feature Story BCPS Mentorship

Mentoring programs boost teacher retention rates at Battle Creek Public Schools

A Battle Creek Public Schools and GVSU new teacher mentorship program is proving successful in retaining teachers. Some mentees have even gone on to assume leadership roles in the district.

Feature Story Dr. Alford Young

Kalamazoo-sized cities provide big insights into how African American see opportunities

What can be done to help change the often cultural and dated mindsets that stop African Americans from exploring better opportunities? “You have to take them out, quite literally,” of their familiar environments, says Dr. Alford Young. “You have to bring them to other spaces and show them what’s going on.”

Feature Story Housing Solutions Market Forces

Market forces among barriers to overcome as community searches for more affordable housing

When you dig into the causes behind the lack of affordable housing in Kalamazoo County it turns out one of the big ones is there are not enough houses to meet the demand. 

Feature Story small-jae-gerhart

Cómo los sistemas locales de salud aprovechan las granjas locales para obtener opciones de alimentos

Instituciones médicas de todo Michigan están utilizando sus recursos locales para llevar alimentos reales a su personal y pacientes.

Partner Content AAoM Kids List

When it comes to autism and mental health, stigma and discrimination play a huge role

Being autistic does not mean a person cannot experience good mental health. However, studies have shown that 78% of autistic children have at least one mental health condition. Stigma and discrimination are often a contributing factor.

Feature Story Columnist Lucia Rios

Event accessibility: Making every occasion inclusive for all

It’s not hard to bring inclusivity and accessibility to your events, but it does require a bit of foresight. Disability advocate Lucia Rios offers ideas to make your gathering more welcoming.

Longform Sacred Earth

Grounded: How art, faith, and ecology unite to 'touch the heart' and inspire changeWestminster Art Festival going on now

When it comes to climate change, science appeals to the mind, but art can touch the heart. To create change, we need both. The Westminster Presbyterian Art Festival unites earth care, art, and faith for its annual celebration.

Feature Story One possible way the river could look if it were freed from its concrete channel.

Rising tide of optimism eddies around Battle Creek river naturalization project

Rivers are often urban areas' greatest natural resources. In Battle Creek, plans to restore, beautify, and re-imagine the Battle Creek River are taking shape, thanks to many partners.

Feature Story Kalamazoo Commuter Challenge

Kalamazoo Commuter Challenge encourages new cyclists to Love to Ride to work

With new bike lanes and lights installed in downtown Kalamazoo, it's time for cyclists to test them out. If you work downtown or nearby, consider joining the Kalamazoo Commuter Challenge taking place from May 17 to 30.

Feature Story BC Bagpipes

Midwest bagpipers and drummers skirl and snare together in Battle Creek

An opportunity to hear the ethereal sound of bagpipes and drums happens this Saturday at the Cricket Club in Battle Creek. The Greater Midwest Pipe Band (which has a home base in BC) is preparing for the prestigious World Pipe Band Championships this August.  

Feature Story Roel Garcia walks into the Library for the Visually Impaired and Physically Disabled in Muskegon.

Step inside an award-winning library for people with disabilities

Roel Garcia shares what it's like to visit the Library for the Visually Impaired and Physically Disabled in Muskegon. Part of the Muskegon Area District Library, it is a fully functioning library specializing in additional services for people with disabilities.

Longform Robert Sheehan  and colleague, Valerie Jamerson, take a look at the new Tool Kit.

Social Work Career Promotion Tool Kit shares benefits and pathways to rewarding careers

The toolkit is designed to enhance recruitment and promote social work career opportunities across the state. It includes sample language for websites, emails, and social media posts as well as recommended language for various professionals, including high school guidance counselors, college academic advisors, and behavioral health providers. There are also photographic materials for outreach usage.   

Longform Still Hope Boxing

BC's Still Hope Boxing teaches mothers and daughters to cross, jab, bob and weave together

In honor of Mother's Day, Still Hope Boxing offered mothers and daughters a chance to learn some boxing skills together — for self-protection, fun, and bonding

Feature Story Kalamazoo Lyceum

Kalamazoo Lyceum: Intentionality, commitment, communication key ingredients for creating community

Community is where you are and what you cultivate, according to panel members at the Kalamazoo Lyceum. Writer Mark Wedel was there to be your 'fly on the wall' for a discussion on 'Hope for the Community.'

Feature Story Battle Creek Community Foundation CEO

New Battle Creek Community Foundation CEO Mary Muliett grateful to now work where she lives

Mary Mullett, Battle Creek Community Foundation's new CEO and President, says she's grateful to be working in her own community where she can deepen connections and "help alleviate barriers" so people can "realize their potential."

Feature Story DECA

Voices of Youth: How DECA prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in the art of business

In its 78th year, Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA), an international after-school club, continues to provide local youth with opportunities to develop products and apps, market, present their ideas, and prepare for their futures.

Longform Sara Simmonds and staff

The many faces of public health

The work of employees of the public health departments is heavily based on the communities they serve and the safety of the people that live in them. Prevention, protection and promotion is the name of the game for the workforce in this field.   

Battle Creek

Battle Creek's Washington Heights reaching new heights in affordable housing stock

“We have demonstrated that we’ll do what we say we’re going to do. Some of the barriers we’ve had to overcome we’ve looked at as opportunities. These new homes will be an opportunity for residents to create generational wealth and go from renter-ship to homeownership.” For the full story, click hereFor more stories, please visit here.
 

Kalamazoo

Beyond belief: How faith communities are lighting the way on climate change

In this first installment of our Sacred Earth series, we speak with Dr. Cybelle Shattuck, whose combined interests in sustainability and religion have helped her identify how faith institutions engage, support, and undertake earth care. Read the full story here. Read more stories here.