Encore.org Stories in
The Christian Science Monitor

How a city girl found herself in a community garden that feeds thousands

Heather Coit/The News-GazetteDawn Blackman, who recently received the Encore.com award for her work with the community gardens through the Champaign Church of the Brethren, where she also shares the gospel each month, sits inside the church sanctuary in Champaign on Monday, Nov. 23, 2015.

May 3, 2017: Dawn Blackman Sr. saw a need for fresh food in her urban community. The Randolph Street Community Garden in Champaign, Ill., where she serves as garden steward, now has 72 beds, and more than 3,000 people received fresh produce in 2016.

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A one-time lawyer forsakes confrontation for mediation in his encore career

March 8, 2017: Doug Noll’s life began at 50, when he abandoned a traditional law practice for peace-making. Since then, Doug and his colleagues at Prison of Peace have worked to change the culture of California prisons, one mediation at a time.
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An author troubled by war invites veterans to "write peace"

February 8, 2017: National Book Award-winning author Maxine Hong Kingston shares her personal reflections on art that heals, via a writing group for veterans that spans generations, geography and personal experience.

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How a boxing gym opened the door to encore purpose

January 4, 2017: One-time “bad kid” Harry Cummins III found his purpose in life when he opened a boxing gym to reach kids on the streets, in gangs, from broken homes.
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How this woman became a voice for children in foster care

Char WilliamsDecember 7, 2016: In her mid-60s, Char Williams found her calling as an advocate in court – and in life – for these youths.

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How a ‘computer guy’ came to be a Promise Fellow for kids who have it tough

William LahNovember 9, 2016: William Lah got involved at a local middle school, pledging that students will have a caring adult in their life, no matter what. Among other things, he helps them envision a future at college.

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Once a newcomer, she now helps others apply for US citizenship

Bonnie ChangOctober 5, 2016: Bonnie Chang, who came from Taiwan, spent three decades in the computer technology industry. Within a month of retiring, she got a phone call that led to a new opportunity.

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How this woman became ‘MaMa’ to ex-gang members

Constance CarusoSeptember 7, 2016: Constance Caruso was already in her 80s when she decided to volunteer for Homeboy Industries, a gang rehabilitation program. She draws on challenges she’s had herself as she supports others.

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She creates quilts with a message

Nedra BondsAugust 3, 2016: Nedra Bonds started quilting at age 6, never expecting it to be her lifework after retirement. One of her quilts helped stop the building of a landfill near a historical site.

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A critic of schools gets a new view as a tutor in Cleveland

Larry-Jemison-410x410June 29, 2016: Larry Jemison was a self-described complainer about
poor schools. But after he retired, he saw a chance to
actually do something. Now, three days a week, he helps
children learn to read.

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One man’s odyssey as a rookie cop – at age 50

Mark JohnsonJune 1, 2016: Mark Johnson was a United Way executive but wanted a more
hands-on job. He quickly came to realize that he had more to
learn than to teach.

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One woman’s outreach in US: ‘Meet a Muslim’ events

Moina ShaiqMay 4, 2016: Since the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, California,
Moina Shaiq has invited people to join her in a
conversation.

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A television exec wears a new 'flat hat' – park ranger

John KerrMarch 23, 2016: After four decades in public TV, John Kerr found
himself living his childhood dream, serving at
Yellowstone National Park.

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'I saw myself as a university professor'

Claudia ThorneFebruary 3, 2016: Older Americans are making a difference in ‘encore careers.’
Claudia Thorne achieved her dream of a Ph.D.

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