Why We Love 90 Days, 90 Voices

How a group of City Bureau alums turned a relationship built in our newsroom into an independent reporting series on immigration in America.

The founders of 90 Days, 90 Voices are, in various ways, born of the immigrant experience, living it today and raising the country’s next generation of children born to immigrant parents.

They have something else in common: they’re all former City Bureau reporters.

We couldn’t be more excited about the 90 Days, 90 voices project, in part, because we didn’t have a role in its emergence. Our program alums met during City Bureau’s Fall 2016 reporting cycle and went on to independently produce a project that embodies the journalistic values we share.

In 90 Days, 90 Voices, you’ll find amazing stories of immigrants and refugees building their lives in the U.S. in spite of a hostile White House. Stories like that of Tango dancer, log cabin builder and Syrian immigrant Jafra Saif; Malak Afaneh, who blends “American patriotism and [her] Muslim ideals” through her design of a Muslim Rosie the Riveter T-shirt; and Abdinasir Kahin, a Somali torture survivor who found a home in the U.S. with the help of Chicagoans who opened their hearts to him.

Beyond that, you’ll find the fruits of a connection made in City Bureau’s South Side newsroom, more than six months ago.

We think that the most exciting thing about collective journalism is that it creates strong relationships between reporters and the communities they cover. And, it creates connections between the journalists themselves. By giving our Reporting Fellows ownership of their own projects, and by encouraging entrepreneurship within the newsroom, something new can emerge—a more balanced and equitable collaboration between journalists, communities and the broader public. We believe in looking beyond the folks directly participating in our programs to create a network of engaged, responsive individuals who are able and willing to take on difficult questions within their own spheres of influence.

90 Days, 90 Voices tells the stories of those seeking a home in the United States during an age of unrest, and we’re proud to consider it part of the extended City Bureau family.

Join City Bureau and 90 Days, 90 Voices on April 27—the 90th day since President Donald Trump signed an executive order that barred citizens of seven countries from coming to the United States—for a workshop at our Public Newsroom. The 90-minute session will offer a look into 90 Days, 90 Voices reporters’ favorite stories, tips for covering immigration issues and celebrate the storytelling project’s work.

You’ll also have a chance to add your own voice to the project and meet some of the immigrants featured in 90 Days, 90 Voices media.

Here’s more from the 90 Days team:

Three months ago, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that barred citizens of seven countries from coming to the United States for 90 days and all refugee admissions for 120 days. Syrians, who make up 1 out of every 6 refugees in the world today, were indefinitely banned.
In response to the ban, three Chicago journalists (Sarah Conway, Alex Hernandez and Nissa Rhee) founded 90 Days, 90 Voices — a storytelling project about those seeking a home in the United States during an age of unrest. Working with a diverse group of reporters, illustrators, photographers, and videographers, they are giving readers a glimpse into the hardships endured by more than 65 million refugees worldwide who are searching for dignity in the largest displacement crisis since World War II.
Thursday, April 27 marks 90 days since the executive order was signed. Come join the founders of 90 Days, 90 Voices at this special Public Newsroom event to hear some of their favorite stories, learn tips for covering immigration issues, and celebrate the storytelling project’s work.
Those who come will have the opportunity to add their own voice to the project and to meet some of the immigrants we have featured.
Food and drinks will be provided. Please RSVP so we know how much to bring.
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