Our Children Are Not Ours

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Your children are not your children.They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. -Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, 1923 As the Nation approaches Memorial Day, a time of reflection begun in the 1860s to remember those who sacrificed their lives to keep our country free and safe, we all are confronted with a […]

Talk to Me


Ultimately, as parents, we must stay present for our children

A Letter to Our Children from Dr. Sheryl Brissett Chapman

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August, 2017 A Letter to Our Children: We adults must be very confusing at times. Too often, we have not protected you from the open and random expressions of bigotry, racism, and violence in our world, and in our community.  Most often, we fail to protect you from the endless barrage of media imagery that […]

Betty’s House I and II: Helping Women Escape Abusive Relationships

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Escaping an abusive relationship is hard for any woman, but immigrant women without legal status face particular obstacles. They have fled their country or abuser without anything to start from. But if they live in Montgomery County, they can find hope and help at the NCCF’s Betty House I and II. Each house provides up […]

The Haunting of a City

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D.C. police chief Cathy Lanier said there are no confirmed sightings of Tatum and Relisha together after March 1, and no sightings of Relisha at all after that date. –The Washington Post

Opposing Forces

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It seems that her face, an angelic, wistful, and questioning portrait, is circulating everywhere, calling out for someone to help us find Relisha. Vigils, newspapers, police press conferences, television interviews, City Council hearings, all question what happened to this quiet little eight-year-old girl who resided in a massive emergency homeless family shelter with nearly 600 […]

Boys II

The beautiful, graceful anchorwoman asked me on her live newscast, “What is going on? How can these youths kill someone out of boredom?” I paused. Who can really answer this probing question without direct and detailed knowledge of these young offenders? Yet, I also was not surprised or shocked by the tragedy — simply and […]

The Boys

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He sat sprawling low out of his seat with his long legs, while facing me across the large conference table. The eyes looked like shades at half mast on a window, self protective, keeping more in, minimizing the clues which filter out. He was a fairly new resident in NCCF’s high intensity group home and clearly he did not trust any adult in the […]