The story of 6210 S. Fairfield is not unusual or unlike the story of hundreds of foreclosed and vacant buildings and homes across Chicago’s South Side. Yet, when a group of residents and organizers from across the city came together through the Multifaith Housing Reclamation Campaign and packed court rooms–with neighborhood leaders standing with Imams, Priests and Rabbis– to say enough is enough, this building emerged as a powerful illustration of how through organizing and coming together we can begin to reclaim properties, blocks and our communities.
IMAN leaders and organizers had their eyes on this building as the possible site for the second Green Reentry project for a while. For more than a year, we worked with resident leaders to try to get it boarded up, but when it became clear that those responsible for the property weren’t interested in being accountable we started to organize with our close allies from the Jewish Council of Urban Affairs (JCUA) and the Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP).
Now, after a year of hard work raising the resources, IMAN has pulled together a unique partnership between the Department of Housing and Economic Development, Al Faisal Without Borders, the Chicago Community Trust, and Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago to begin the process of rehabilitating the property and training the next Green Reentry work crew. The construction is scheduled to begin after the Eid holiday, and we look forward to keeping all our leaders and supporters abreast of the exciting progress.