I, Too, Am America: Reverse Migration in Chicago

The Illuminated team is in Chicago and, for the first time during our journey, our team is in two separate locations. Half of our team is staying with a host-family in the suburbs of Elmhurst, and the other half is with a different family in the city.

Our focus in Chicago is understanding reverse migration patterns. The Great Migration took place between 1915 and 1970, when 6 million African Americans moved from the South to northern cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Washington DC, and New York. What we will be learning about during our time in Chicago is who is moving back to the South today – and why – thereby creating a pattern of reverse migration.

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Sikh prayer at our host family’s house

A general overview of our stay in Chicago:

City: Chicago                        Home-Stay Focus: Sikhism**                           Duration: July 14-17

July 14th: Introductions with host family + Neighborhood Exploration
July 15th (South side): Meeting up with Elizabeth Bueno (our global fellow who went to China) who will share her summer experiences with our team + Learning from Voices of Youth in Chicago’s Education (VOYCE) and the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN)
July 16th (Wheaton): Going to a gurdwara (Sikh temple) service and meeting with community member Simerneet Singh beforehand for a discussion and question/answer session
July 17th (Bronzeville): Meeting with VOYCE at Albany Park Neighborhood Council + LeAlan Jones, author of Our America: Ghetto Life 101 who will give us a tour of his former community in the Ida B Wells Projects that have since been demolished + Lunch with Hana

July 17th: Departure to New York City, New York

** Special thanks to The Surat Initiative for collaborating on this project and helping us arrange host families in Chicago

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Breaking biryani with VOYCE students on the south side

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