Engaging People: Stories About Citizens Revitalizing Democracy


Engaging People is a web series of short documentaries about people who are engaged and actively making change in their communities. They serve as models of service, volunteerism and political action every day and in crisis situations, illustrating what it means to be an active participant in American democracy.

Part 2: Bonnie Kerness Social Change Activist

Bonnie Kerness has been an activist since she was fourteen. In 1961, at the age of nineteen, she moved to Tennessee to participate in the Civil Rights Movement. In 1970 she moved back North and became active with welfare and tenants rights and anti-war groups. Bonnie has worked as a community organizer on gay rights, welfare rights, women’s rights and other campaigns. She speaks loudly and publicly on behalf of people in prison and on US human rights violations of the United Nations Convention against Torture and is often quoted in articles, books and other publications on prison related subjects. Bonnie shows us how she has used nearly sixty years of her life challenging social injustices and speaking truth to power.

Part 3: Community Artist Will "Kasso" Condry

S.A.G.E. (Stylez Advancing Graffiti’s Evolution) Coalition is a Trenton, NJ-based art collaborative that seeks to transform symbols of urban blight — crumbling, abandoned homes and buildings — into showcases for art. S.A.G.E. artists remind those in neighborhoods that unity in community and pride in heritage are still alive. Their humanitarian goal is to uplift the lives of their communities and create a source of pride around the soul of their messages. An impact can be seen in their widening network and visual “take-back-the-streets” attitude. You'll be taken behind the scenes to see how this artist coalition is changing things up in Trenton and building community with people from diverse backgrounds.

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