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“I Want People to Have a Voice”: Volunteers Lead Voter Registration Project

(From left) April Hill, Jackie Jasso-Martinez and Gabriela Picazo have spent much of their autumn helping community members register to vote.
(From left) April Hill, Jackie Jasso-Martinez and Gabriela Picazo have spent much of their autumn helping community members register to vote.
Registering to vote online is the easiest way to ensure that your voice is heard in November's election. With the online registration deadline coming up on Monday (!), we wanted to remind you to not only register, but also to spread the word. Need a little inspiration? Read the story of four amazing women who are helping their communities register to vote.

Tent Life: Reflections on Experiencing Homelessness as a Child

As a child, Barbara Abelhauser lived in a tent with her family. Today she is a bridge operator and writer. Photo by Amy Sassenberg courtesy Barbara Abelhauser.
As a child, Barbara Abelhauser lived in a tent with her family. Today she is a bridge operator and writer. Photo by Amy Sassenberg courtesy Barbara Abelhauser.
"There was a complicated set of circumstances that caused us to live in a tent, but laziness wasn’t one of them. I have worked since I was 10 years old. There wasn’t a single member of my family that wouldn’t have moved heaven and earth to get out of our situation." Barbara Abelhauser shares what it was like to spend much of her childhood living in a tent with her family.

New Program to Stabilize Students Is a “Genuine Solution”

<a href="http://firesteelwa.org/2015/02/we-had-to-tell-her-about-santa-homeless-parents-face-impossible-choices/" target="_blank">Andrea Charles</a> walks her daughter Zoe to school. Thanks to the efforts of Andrea and other advocates, a new law directs resources toward students who are experiencing homelessness. Photo by Dan Lamont.
Andrea Charles walks her daughter Zoe to school. Thanks to the efforts of Andrea and other advocates, a new law directs resources toward students who are experiencing homelessness. Photo by Dan Lamont.
About 1 in 20 students in Everett Public Schools are experiencing homelessness. A new state-funded grant will connect their families with rental assistance and other resources to help them get into stable homes.

Housing Advocates Go for the Gold

We don't have *actual* medals like these to hand out, but we do want to recognize the extraordinary accomplishments of local advocacy heroes. Image from 
<a href="https://www.olympic.org/olympic-medals" target="_blank">olympic.org</a>.
We don't have *actual* medals like these to hand out, but we do want to recognize the extraordinary accomplishments of local advocacy heroes. Image from olympic.org.
As Olympians dazzle viewers worldwide, local community members are flexing their advocacy muscles and achieving victories in the movement to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to live in a safe, healthy, affordable home. In the spirit of the Olympics, we highlight a few all-star teams who've earned a round of applause and one shining moment on the Firesteel podium.
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