“We Are Here” Story Collection

Residents were asked, “Please tell us about an important moment in your life that would help someone understand what it’s like living in your neighborhood.” Explore 50 responses below, selected at random. Which stories capture your attention? (Some responses were transcribed by youth volunteers.) To learn more about the storyteller and how they interpreted their response, click “Zoom In.”

No help

When my son died I realized the community is out of control. Kids killing kids . Nobody really care anymore things getting hard .
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My neighborhood-Rickia

I loved my neighborhood minus the violence it has the today the kids are different but there’s always a handful that comes and sit and talk to me. They are sweethearts. Then the others won’t even help themselves.
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Sports (Story #181)

Playing sports was a important moment in my life.It kept me off the streets and focused on something. Most of my friends was in the streets and now they dead or in jail .
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Don’t do things

Growing up in my neighbor hood was bad because it was guns bullets on the floor every morning I was in this small part of town i stayed on cherry hill (that’s what they call the street) it was bad. My mom got tired of it. I wouldn’t want kids doing things they not supposed to be doing
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Choose the right friends

Well growing up in the city of lake worth was bad for me I did drugs at the age of 16 cause my friend put me. On it my story is going to teach you about. How to choose the right friends
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The sixteen year old boy

Recently there was a shooting right down the street from my house. A 16 year old boy killed a 21 year old man on accident. This young 16 year old shot him dead in front of everyone at a park. The same park my kids play at. It’s just a very sad thing to see happen a young 16 year old now a murder.
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Living life

Although the impact of living in high-poverty neighborhoods has been well documented, it’s hard to fully explain the toll it takes on a person’s body and soul. Frustration over high prices, high bills, and high unemployment rates is worsened by the bane of many a poor community—the local drug economy. Dealing drugs was the neighborhood summer job program. And for many young neighbors who were expelled from school (because administrators are more likely to punish black students than provide more holistic help), the drug trade was less an alternative than an inevitability.
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The Early Life

I grew up in Plains, GA. I grew up with Jimmy Carter. Plains was a little town and everybody knew everybody. Black and white did not make a difference. My brothers and Jimmy used to play together. We all worked in the fields together.
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All is well

Growing up in my neighborhood wasn’t actually bad all the time., I mean things did happen but there was also some good things going on. I lived in a house with all my brothers and they always looked out for me.
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Life is the way it is

Well I don’t have much to share my neighborhood wasn’t all bad and good you can say people may have got shot may have got into fights I was always that girl that got into fights
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Keep moving

originally from boynton beach since 1964 then recently moved to delray 2 years. All friends live in boynton .Since the late 90 killing increased . a lot more activities to do now. going to school was bad because of the people that attended . High school was seperated in two parts . First group of kids to go to congress middle school. Played tackle football in middle school. goes to work everyday plans on retiring no time soon. Hurricane andrew hut really bad . Found out about hurricant through radio. Hurricane lasted a couple of hours. Parents from florida. Full …
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Eric Armor

Many people are afraid to walk outside some are even afraid to walk their dog.but when you realize it’s your NEIGHBORHOOD you can control it yourself you can make it a better town than people who are afraid too.
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Something out of nothing

Boynton Beach high schools prom walk through was cancelled. I remember my Bruce being upset about it. Then she got the news that one of the students told everybody that it was at his house. So they all came together to make it a real walk through. This shows how you can make something out of nothing.
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One Big Family

My neighbor next door made sure that I got home safely from school while my parents were at work. The community was one big family.
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Stay safe (Story #188)

Growing up in lake worth was some what good people treated others. Nicely until it got bad people started killing beach other. And other dangerous things my story is going to teach you how to Stay safe my community is not the same
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Business minding-Nelcael Jospeh

Once i was walking with my grandma. She lived by my school so she would walk to pick me up everyday and while we were walking we heard arguing and my grandma gripped my hand and started walker fast she said come on boy walk fast i said grandma we should help them she said shut you mouth and mind your business i wouldn’t dare say another word because my grandma didn’t play the radio. When we had walked into the house she fixed me a snack as she usually would and we heard gun shots I looked at ,y …
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Because of what I look like

I have been stopped by a cop just for walking one day. He stopped got out the car and asked where I was headed. I responded in a polite manner. He continued to watch me and later started to follow me until I went into the store I was headed to. I felt some type of way about this.
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Violence (Story #96)

Growing up in a violent neighborhood where gang violence would occur with fights, gun shots going off every night it was a little scary not knowing when this would end.
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Good of bad

Growing up in Boynton Beach my family and i were close he had a nice relationship because my grandma would never allow anything else we stuck together and it was all love. We lived on “the hill” and there was a lot going on fighting. Violence. But there was also good times.
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Finally Home

The important moment was when I moved here 2010 from WPB. I was homeless. I had income but it was not enough to find somewhere to live. I was living with several peopele in a room but it didn’t work out and I was kicked out. So then I went to another place, paid my rent and then 3 days he lights went out. And the place was in debt and it was freezing cold and no electricity. I was so distraught, asking my lord to take me. And then I read a newsletter, call and spoke with a woman …
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Hard times

Growing up in Boynton Beach wasn’t so easy. I been on my own since 16 years old. I have had me ups and downs but I still push through.
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Tour de Oakmont

My son learned how to bike recently. They Tour de France was taking place, which motivated him to try once again. We live at the end of a cul de sac and I ran around with him, holding his bike seat, as he peddled and worked to find his balance. Without planning it, he took off down the street, unassisted with me running behind him. That afternoon, we probably covered close to three miles – he peddled and navigated the street to the main road and down to the park while I ran along side or way behind yelling for …
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Hope and Vote to Change

Growing up in Pahokee, a small city in Western Palm Beach County, with nearly eight thousand residents. The people was proud and full of life. While people with jobs did not earn salaries like middle class earners today, more people had jobs and there own place to live. Today, our communities are faced with homelessness, a lack of jobs, substance abuse and violence without cause. I had a wonderful childhood. I recall having lots of friends and everyone in the community getting along without the drama of guns and gang violence. Parents could leave the kids home alone for a …
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La familia

Every Christmas is a good Christmas in Boynton. Later in the evening everybody in the neighborhood is dressed up and goes to the Hester center. The kids love going the get to show off what they got an have a good time. The good thing about this is nobody gets upset because if one person I the community got everybody does. We are a family.
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Always listen

Many people may say. Things they don’t mean ! The community I growing up in was a community of violence if you have ever been told to stop doing things please stop when you are told always listen !
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Weekend yard work

I have lived in the same place on and off for most of my life with the same neighbor . Maybe about ten years ago sadly her husband past . Now am 42 with a son so what we do on weekends we cut her grass for her like he husband use to do .
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Doing better

Wildcat games are always the best games. One game they had was just so much fun. Sitting there peacefully watching the boys play brings so much joy. It shows that they are not wasting there time and are actually long something with their lives.
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The Neighborhood

Growing up as a kid me and my neighborhood we’re one. All the kids knew each other we knew each-other parents and the neighborhood was like one big family.Growing my single mother would struggle financially.But we always ate and had a roof over our heads because our neighbors would help my mother. Our neighbors would help no matter the issue or problem we considered ourselves a family.
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Ice cream man

If you live in the heart of Boynton you would know about the ice cream man. If you hungry he got what you need. I remember the kids running to get stuff before everything run out. Kids love him, he’s like family.
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Not always bad

One day was my nephews football game at Boynton high. We went out to support him. As we were there we noticed how much the community was bonding. Just at a football game you can tell that Boynton is not a bad place.
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Community man-Rickia

I pride myself on being the ladies’ man. I love the attention I got from the neighborhood women but not the m
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The community I live in

Together, our analyses can offer a portrait of who is poor and why, and explore the public policy implications; we can lift up voices and lives that are normally ignored or caricaturized by the media; we can include people living on the brink in high-profile events that explore poverty and in our advocacy efforts.
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Don’t take that other path

Many People in the past wouldn’t understand the life I was going through my mother didn’t care for me , my farther didn’t care for me I was a problem child in and out of the detention center . I dropped out of school at the age 16 and became something these Young’s kids shouldn’t become in this world you only get one mother and one farther even if they Are not here with you. Just learn to love those who are .
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Getting to Know Jupiter

I decided to move to Jupiter three years ago. I didn’t know much about it before but had so much to learn. So many people move to Jupiter and Palm Beach County from out of the state, I learned especially from the northeast. I sought to get to know the community, the good and the bad. I just wonder if the people moving down here do as well?
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My community (Story #389)

In December 2017, the United Nations special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, undertook a two-week investigation on the effects of systemic poverty in the United States, and sharply condemned private wealth and public squalor
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Stay safe (Story #204)

Well I was Always good in my neighborhood it was my grandchildren that wasn’t they left me they didn’t want to come see me. Because all the violence that was going on. Mother and farther got tired of it tired of them crying
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My life (Story #98)

Many of them have worked for decades examining poverty-related issues—from hiring discrimination to segregation in housing and education, criminal justice reform to immigration, deep poverty to homelessness. Even though they had devoted their lives to fighting poverty, some of the participants asked whether their work made any difference at all.
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Leaving

Growing up in boynton was kinda tough. I had to get my family from around here .To many drugs and murders. Everyday I’m worried about my kids when they go outside ,and it shouldn’t be that way
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Hard work (Story #264)

Important moment in my life would be finding my first job. Nothing is giving to you around here so you have to go get it. I was 16 when McDonald’s hired me and I’ve been working since.
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The House Fire

In my neighborhood we view each other as a big family. I remember when my close friend that also lives in my neighborhood house caught on fire. The church and community as a whole decide to help her and her whole family get back on their feet.
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Pray for the best

Me having kids is an important moment. Everybody in Boynton knows what it’s like having to raise your kids. Worrying when they put if they safe or in trouble. All we do is pray for the best lives for our child.
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Don’t do nothing

Growing up in boynton wasn’t always the best we didn’t have the school we wanted we was in and out of Trouble my brother and I Was Trouble makers
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Make the right friends

An important day in my life was when I first got out of prison Life wasn’t always great for me and it wasn’t always good but when I went down that bad road and had the wrong friends I was in and out of jail I was selling drugs Things was just bad for me don’t need you guys making the same mistake I made
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Great Place

Overall the community is great great family oriented neighborhood where everyone knows each other.
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Pride- Devonte white

My pride was a big part if my life.It was so many times where my pride played a part in my life. It has got me in trouble and out of trouble
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