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Two Years and Running: Nightlight's Top Five Stories

Restorative Practices, Detroit

Kuhu Saha

Matt Gillard

Dorothy Pintar

Emilio Zamarripa

While Michigan Nightlight’s mission is all about moving forward – covering forward thinkers and forward-looking programs and approaches – we figured our two-year anniversary is actually a great time to look back. We’re proud to share our top five stories, in terms of content read by the largest number of readers. Take a look or another look.
 #1 - Repairing Detroit Through Restorative Practices (Feb. 2013) looks at ways Restorative Practices are used in schools to help youth build communities of support and resolve conflict in healthy ways.
From the story: The idea is this: with distractions aired and out of the way, students can better focus on learning. Teachers know what’s going on with their students, and that alone can lead to a different outcome for troubled students. When conflicts do arise, they are treated in a restorative way so they become teachable moments that improve the culture of the classroom and the school, rather than diminishing it.
#2 - Kuhu Saha (March 2013) has the fate of many students in her hands. The director of Give Merit’s FATE Program, a career development and mentorship program for Detroit high schoolers, wants all youth to maintain unwavering confidence – confidence in themselves, their worth, their abilities, their dreams and visions, and that of their peers. With that, I believe, could come great things: persisting through troubled situations, graduating high school, going to college, graduating college, pursuing passions, changing the world.”
#3 - Our recent profile (May 2014) on Michigan’s Children new CEO, Matt Gillard, indicates that our readers are watching how children’s issues are being addressed in the state legislature. Gillard discusses the bipartisan issues around protecting vulnerable kids and advancing the outcome for all Michigan kids in this featured profile.
From the story:  When asked why all Michiganders – regardless of relationship status, age, and priorities – should care about improving the welfare of children in their state, Gillard says that there is both a moral obligation to protect this vulnerable population, as well as an economic imperative to create a self-sustaining society that benefits everyone.
#4 - From the northeast reaches of the mitten, Dorothy Pintar, director of the School Success Partnership in Alpena, wants all kids to have the opportunity to live out their dreams. Says Pintar in her May 2012 interview, “So many people, regardless if they’re middle class, upper class, or live in poverty, think people who live in poverty live that way because they’re lazy, and that’s not the case at all. So much of the poverty we have is generational or related to mental health issues. Kids aren’t choosing to live in poverty.”
#5 - Emilio Zamarripa, a youth advocate for the Honoring our Youth program at Steepletown Neighborhood Services in Grand Rapids, reassures lost youth of their worth, their value and their potential. From Zamarripa’s Q&A (Sept. 2013): Accepting failure at face value, that's failing. But to fail, then review and identify mistakes, make needed corrections, and then try again? That's perseverance. That is demonstrating strength. That is success.”
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