On the Eastside, you’ll find many people committed to preserving and improving their community and celebrating its uniqueness, people who work with neighbors to develop creative solutions to problems and challenges, and people who are just plain good neighbors. 8500 households make up this affordable, friendly, and walkable community. The area is home to younger families and long-time residents who have grown up here, raised their families, and now choose to enjoy their retirement in the neighborhood. The diversity of the Eastside is a prominent reason for people to choose to live here. Artists and auto workers, medical professionals and graduate students, people of all cultural and ethnic backgrounds enjoy a lively mix of ideas, traditions, and lifestyles.
Eastside Pride is a project developed by Jeremy Herliczek, an Eastsider and faculty member at MSU’s College of Arts and Humanities. The project involves interviewing and making portraits of some of the awesome neighbors that make the Eastside such a fun, vibrant community to live.
You can see the photographs installed on the walls of the Allen Market Place, and you can also see the project here.
Growing in Community: Stories of the Eastside
This series captures the many ways that Allen Neighborhood Center has touched the lives of our neighbors over the years. Each narrative is as unique and diverse as the community we serve.
“[ANC is] very helpful because they care for our health, they care for our food, they make sure that we get enough food to eat, and they are very friendly – they mean a lot. It is just like a family to me, you know?”
Click here to read John’s story.
“The people at ANC have become like friends and family to me. I’m totally in love with their commitment and passion for the community and the neighbors.”
Click here to read Julia’s story.
“I would say that the purpose of Allen Neighborhood Center is to make life better for people. Being a vendor at the farmers market and volunteering with Breadbasket allows me to help ANC achieve this goal, and I’m so thankful to be a part of it.”
Click here to read Dan’s story.
“Everyone who comes in here, every neighbor, gets treated equally. No one ever has to wonder if something isn’t gonna be taken care of, or wonder if someone’s not going to help them, because Allen Neighborhood Center takes care of everyone equally.”
Click here to read Alfred’s story.
“Allen Neighborhood Center has helped to show me that there is more than just me and my story. I feel like a lot of people, you know, you’re the center of your own universe. But when you come here, you see all these different people and some of them have struggles, but they also have this passion.”
Click here to read Colton’s story.
“I’m a different person because of the people I’ve met and the things I’ve seen here. I’ve seen it grow for over 12 years now, and it just amazes me. I feel like the word diversity is thrown around so much, but the Eastside truly is, and ANC truly symbolizes that.”
Click here to read Matt’s story.
“Allen Neighborhood Center – you know, really, I think it’s the heart of the community. I mean, we grow food, we make food, we distribute free food, we sell food – food’s really what brings people together more than anything else.”
Click here to read Jordyn’s story.
“I have a shortage in English vocabulary to express the kind of people that I met here at Allen Neighborhood Center. This place has motivated me to change my life.”
Click here to read Rahel’s story.
“Allen Neighborhood Center focuses on improving this community’s quality of life. It’s a grassroots effort, and they’ve come such a long way over the years. A lot of their success has come from hard work, a lot of volunteerism, and a lot of sacrifice.”
Click here to read Edward’s story.
“The overall attitude of ANC is shown in their willingness to sit down and listen and help with an incredible level of sincerity. You find that all the time here. In this day and age, they are a godsend. All too often in our very hectic world there aren’t people who are willing to give of themselves in that way.”
Click here to read John’s story.
“Allen Neighborhood Center is my place to go. I’m here for them. If they call me, I will be there to help with whatever it is that they need – it’s part of my life now. It’s so refreshing to be at a place where happy is.”
Click here to read Sherlyn’s story.