What is happening in 53206

A Rich Community in Milwaukee

We have lived in the inner city of Milwaukee since 2006.  We continue to learn more about living here as well as learning more about ourselves.  We realized we should start to share some of these things since others could learn too.  We are probably going to get something wrong but we want to share regardless, knowing we are still growing and learning in our search of getting it right.

Vacation
07
Apr

Vacations

We just got back from vacation and although it was nice, I had this nagging feeling the whole time. I kept thinking about how so many people in my zip code can’t go on vacation. So many can’t go out to eat at a nice restaurant.  Vacations aren’t bad, but the fact that not everyone...
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Alex and Meg Bruzan

We are Alex and Meg

53206 has an incarceration rate for black males at roughly 50%.  Why are we OK with that?

53206 Podcast

Episode 47: A Roadmap For Social Change

For 15 years Alex and Meg have lived in the 53206 zip code – the poorest zip code in Wisconsin. Naively, the thought they were moving in to change the world. Predictably, that didn’t happen, but the desire to create lasting change in their neighborhood never left the two. On this episode of the 53206...
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Run by the river

Ahmaud Arbery’s run woke up white America

I go for a run a lot and I never think about getting shot.  That isn’t the reality for many people that don’t look like me.  A year ago today, Ahmaud Arbery went for a run. His run ended with him being gunned down because he “looked like a thief” due to his skin color.  ...
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53206 Podcast

Episode 43: Decrease Comfort To Increase Purpose

On this episode of the 53206 Cast Meg and Alex talk about passing our girl scout cookies and how something simple in one area becomes complicated in the inner city. Then the two make the correlation between decreasing personal comfort and increasing purpose and share how that can be done in an intentional way to...
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Memorial on 8th St.

How Does Poverty End?

Alex and I have been doing a podcast about living in the inner-city of Milwaukee since this summer.  I don’t post much on it because I never want to force things on people.  I used to just think that some people care about some things and others just don’t and that was fine.  Now, I...
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Sledding in Milwaukee

Chair

Our kids are still doing virtual school so most of our lunch time is trying to get some of their energy out. The other day we went sledding at a good hill over by Riverside High School and were on our way home when there was a car with a chair hanging out the back...
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Why We Can't Wait

Why We Can’t Wait

This weekend one of our neighbors moved out.  She was a really nice woman with two kids.  She was a quiet neighbor and left for work early and came home late.  We didn’t see her a ton but when we talked with her, she was kind and seemed like she was doing a great job...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 39: A Couple Of Thoughts On MLK Day

Meg and Alex are back talking about a couple of quotes from Martin Luther King Jr. and some of the parallels from the early 1960’s and life in a poor almost all black neighborhood today. While a lot has changed in the last almost 60 years, there are still steps needed to put things back...
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We Got This

Gift Drive

Two-thirds of the children in 53206 zip code live in poverty! Though a gift isn’t going to fix poverty, it will make the holidays a little brighter. We Got This community is doing a holiday drive for those in need. As COVID hit, many hourly workers have been hit hard with their income. If you...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 33: Why Are The Only White People That Come Into Our Neighborhood Here To Buy Drugs?

Meg and Alex continue their series around public perceptions of their neighborhood. On this episode, they respond to the idea that drug houses exist and the struggle around getting help removing them.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091 Spotify link: https://open.spotify.com/show/7dJ9rlJW6v1NMG0CMe1SEZ  
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Memorial

Crime Ridden Neighborhood

Alex and I put out a podcast asking the question if our neighborhood was violent and crime ridden on the same day Mae and I rode our bikes by a new memorial of another death in our neighborhood. There were balloons on a tree and candles below them which symbolizes that someone most likely was...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 32: My Neighborhood Is Violent and Crime Ridden?

Meg and Alex are back starting a new series around how perceptions about the inner city rarely match reality. In this episode the duo takes in the idea that 53206 and inner cities in general are violent, crime ridden places.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091 Spotify link: https://open.spotify.com/show/7dJ9rlJW6v1NMG0CMe1SEZ  
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A Theology of Hustle

A Theology of Hustle Podcast

We had the opportunity to be on A Theology of Hustle Podcast with Currey Blandford this week. It was a really neat opportunity to get to know someone who hosts a great podcast. Currey is great guy and also features some great topics on his podcast. Give his stuff a listen!
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 31: A Couple Of Thoughts On The Passing Of Lucille Bridges

Meg and Alex are back in the sitting room reflecting on the recent passing of Lucille Bridges. 60 years ago Lucille brought her daughter Ruby Bridges to school. While that is normal for us today, it was anything but that in Louisiana in 1960.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091 Spotify link: https://open.spotify.com/show/7dJ9rlJW6v1NMG0CMe1SEZ  
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What are you afraid of living in the inner city

Alex and I have been talking about how people ask us if we are afraid of getting shot where we live on the 53206 Podcast and the truth is that before I moved into the inner city of Milwaukee, I was afraid of getting shot even driving through the area.  But then I moved into my...
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Fire

When a society is broken

We had a fire on Wednesday night. While sitting outside, about an hour after sunset, we heard about 50 gunshots just a few blocks away.  We sat there and hoped for them to stop, but they kept coming.  When they finally stopped, we listened and waited for police sirens, but didn’t hear any. The strange...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 30: What’s The Most Surprising Thing About Living Here?

In this episode of the 53206 cast, Meg asks Alex what the most surprising thing about living in the inner city is.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091 Spotify link: https://open.spotify.com/show/7dJ9rlJW6v1NMG0CMe1SEZ  
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Kids learning on computer

High School Drop Out

When I was in high school I didn’t know a person who didn’t graduate high school.  I always thought kids who dropped out of high school chose to drop out.  The fact that Milwaukee Public Schools graduates 2/3 of Black students just seems very off.  In Wisconsin 94% of white students graduate high school and...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 29: Why Are Our Kids 23% More Likely To Graduate High School Than Our Neighbors?

Meg and Alex talk shop, whatever that means, around education, specifically inequities in educational outcomes. The couple dives into some of the causes of a student not graduating high school to give a little insight on one of the more alarming statistics around education – the fact that the graduation rate in Wisconsin for African...
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The community gave up on me, so I gave up on myself

There are few times when someone says something and it penetrates me.  This was one of those times.  On Saturday, there was a celebration of life at the We Got This garden for 4 boys who died.  A woman started speaking on the stage and I was immediately drawn into her words.  She talked about...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 28: Tim, Stop Asking To Buy My House

In this episode of the 53206 Cast, Meg and Alex talk housing and the weird dynamic in the inner city where you might live next to a house that can’t be given away, yet there is always someone trying to buy your house.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091 Spotify link: https://open.spotify.com/show/7dJ9rlJW6v1NMG0CMe1SEZ  
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Sunset

Getting it Wrong to Get it Right

I didn’t get it right. I said racist things. I struggle talking about race and continually get it wrong. So, should I stop talking about race? I struggle. I sometimes say racist things but I really want to get it right. Alex and I did a podcast the other day and I felt like I...
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First rental demo

Filth and Despair

In 2015 we were getting frustrated with the people that lived behind us.  There was trash everywhere around their house and they weren’t being respectful of the neighbors and neighborhood.  We talked with the home owner a few times and it became clear that she didn’t have the capacity to handle the home or be...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 27: That’s A Lot Of Mail

Meg and Alex continue their Sunday morning conversation and talk politics, well sort of. The two discuss some fears they have about the upcoming election, but attempt to do so as neutrally as possible to not take away from the the larger narrative around racial reconciliation.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091 Spotify link: https://open.spotify.com/show/7dJ9rlJW6v1NMG0CMe1SEZ  
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 26: 1,000 Boxes Of Food

Meg and Alex are back in the sitting room to talk about a powerful experience they had recently at the We Got This garden. A semi truck dropped off 1,000 boxes of food which was given out to families in need in about 3 hours. The two talk about what happened and how seeing so...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 25: 4 Murders in 9 Blocks

Meg and Alex sit down to talk about a startling realization that in the course of 9 blocks, one could walk or drive from the location of a recent murder, past two other murder scenes, past their own house and arrive at the location of the fourth murder all of which took place over the...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 24: Gunshots or Fireworks

Hearing gunshots in the 53206 zip code isn’t something all that uncommon. Hearing 50 of them at 8 o’clock on a Wednesday night is. Meg and Alex sit down in the sitting room to talk about hearing that many gunshots on an otherwise beautiful night.    iTunes link: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/53206/id1526303091  
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Breonna Taylor

Justice

I have a hard time grasping what the verdict of Breonna Taylor case really means.  I don’t have to be impacted by the verdict and my privilege allows me to turn away and be comfortable.  I don’t like feeling uncomfortable and as a white person, I live in a society that was built to make me...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 23: The Most Segregated City In America

Meg and Alex answer a listener question about what happens when they return home to the inner city. Then Meg tells a crazy story about police chases and watching someone get before the duo starts to explain the statistics behind Milwaukee being considered one of, if not, the most segregated city in America.  Cited content:...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 22: Getting Sent Home Again

  Meg and Alex pick up where the conversation in episode 21 left off around suspension rates in Wisconsin schools. The two give some thoughts around whether this is an individual problem, a school problem, or a system problem.  Statistics mentioned in this episode: Wisconsin school enrollment: White: 588,000 Black: 77,000 Economically Disadvantaged: 362,000 Not...
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53206 Podcast

53206 Cast – Episode 21: Getting Sent Home Again

Meg and Alex pick up where the conversation in episode 21 left off around suspension rates in Wisconsin schools. The two give some thoughts around whether this is an individual problem, a school problem, or a system problem.  Statistics mentioned in this episode: Wisconsin school enrollment: White: 588,000 Black: 77,000 Economically Disadvantaged: 362,000 Not Economically...
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We Got This

We love the idea of putting more money into 53206 and we believe that the We Got This Garden is one of the best ways to do so.  They provide youth a place to work in the garden as well as train the youth how to have a vision for their life.

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53206 By the Numbers

1. A 2013 University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee study found it was the most incarcerated ZIP code in the state, with a majority of its men having spent time in jail or prison. Experts say little has happened since to suggest the ranking has changed.

2. A third of Milwaukee’s 2,940 vacant lots are located in 53206.

3. Two-thirds of the children in 53206 live in poverty, compared with 42 percent of all children 18 and under city-wide.

4. Nearly 95 percent of its residents are black. No other ZIP code has a greater percentage of African Americans.

5. Residents received the lowest rating for health outcomes from the Center for Urban Population Health in 2009. The rating was based on access to quality healthcare; health behaviors; physical environment; poverty and education.

Stats above by Jsonline


 

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