Lake Street Truth Collective

A nonprofit organization

40 Donors

2% complete

$100,000 Goal

We are the Lake Street Truth Collective, a newly-formed group of artists and cultural organizers who love Lake Street and our people. After a year of injustice, burning and protests, economic instability and pandemic, our community is left feeling raw, divided and exhausted. We have come together to help our neighbors feel seen and heard after this traumatic year, to engage in difficult conversations about the truth of our circumstances, and to rebuild a sense of belonging and connectedness to this land and each other.

Throughout the summer on the Robert's Lot on Chicago & Lake, we are organizing free, accessible community dinners & community healing events as part of a grass-roots “Truth & Repair” process.  Facilitated dinners create structure for participants of different backgrounds to discuss themes such as homelessness, immigration, community violence, and environmental threats. 

Free food, child care, and interpretation into Spanish, Somali and ASL, allow people from different backgrounds to participate and communicate more freely.  Attendance has averaged 50-80 people per event, with food coming from Midtown Global Market vendors. A very diverse group of participants have been joining us, from neighbors who received flyers to unhoused people who learn what’s happening as they walk through the space. Multi-lingual flyers spread the word in the surrounding neighborhoods.

The overwhelming majority of feedback we’ve heard has been very positive -- people are grateful for a space to come together & meet neighbors in a space with good vibes, after a hard year. Our collective, many of whom are Latine, are taking extra care to include our Latine neighbors and business owners, many of whom have been left out of larger conversations because of language barriers and long-term community isolation. We actively welcome passers-by who walk through the Lot on their daily path.

The continuation of these conversations is currently under discussion, as our ability to host has recently been extended through August or possibly October. Community conversation topics could include a discussion of homosexuality within the Latinx community, an intentional conversation between Latinx business owners on Lake Street and the Sex Workers Organizing Project, and more in the works. A number of other groups have approached us about hosting their own community conversations in the space, and we’ve received funding from the Black Visions Collective to share what we hear in our Conversation Cafès with their People’s Movement Assemblies. We plan to document our process and share it as a model with other communities and neighborhoods to learn from our experiences & are considering how to make this cross-cultural community-building work sustainable.

Collaborators: Alé Lachomba, Andrew Yarish, Cynthia J. Zapata, Ellis Lynn Perez, Erika Hernandez, Harry Waters, Jr., Ifrah Mansour, Jennings Mergenthal, Kay Adams, Kya Concepcion, Manuel from Atlas Defense, Quito Ziegler, Sabrina Diehl, Sagrario Torres Flores, Xochi de la Luna, Yasmeenah Xaraga Badaan.

Youth Collective: Alé Headley, Elsie Carmona Quiterio.Joselin Sarmiento, Luis, Martha Cisneros, Meti Awash Negewo, Thetha Kapphahn, Xitlalic Cisneros 

Many thanks to: 21 Days of Peace, Allina Health, Alo Osberg, Angel Aguilera, Atlas Defense, [a collaborative of harm reduction groups], Baki Baki Baki, BareBones, Bici Xicas, Black Visions Collective, Boo McCaleb, Burn Something Collective, CAMINO, Cempazúchitl Collectiva, Dia de los Muertos Committee, DJ DIE/ASPORA, Gabby Coll, Graves Foundation, In the Heart of the Beast, Jacquie Zepeda/Fireweed Workshop, La Doña Cerveceria, Lake Street Council, Lake Street Latino Business Association, Latino Economic Development Center, Line3 Water Protectors, Marlene Rojas Lara, Moonear Khar, Mony Vega, Nemer Fieger, Odie Spinelli, Pangea World Theater, Pedro Pablo, PPNA, REAL Minneapolis, Sami Pfeffer, DJ Sci-Fi, SWOP, Tammey Skinaway, Tyra Thomas, Uproar Performing Arts, Weisman Art Museum, Wing Young Huie, Yhante Williams, DJ Yonci and many more.

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FBO: Lake Street Truth Collective 711 W Lake St Ste 102
Minneapolis, MN 55408

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