Senior Management Analyst Lyn Larson, with Keller Williams Realtor and Tulsa Housing Authority staff, read to children at Sandy Park's Recreation Center.
Field Office Director Sharon Gordon-Ribeiro engages children while reading at Comanche Park Apartments.
The Tulsa Field Office Field Policy and Management (FPM) staff played a large role in commemorating the 45th anniversary of the National Federal Fair Housing Act through several highly visible activities. HUD, in conjunction with the Tulsa Area Fair Housing Partnership (TAFHP), organized a screening of the documentary film, "The House We Live In. The film, a PBS documentary featured on the HUD website last winter, was screened at Living Arts, a contemporary arts nonprofit organization in Tulsa. It is one segment of a three-part series called, "Race: The Power of an Illusion," and it focuses on how governmental policy buttressed by individual action created the residential segregation patterns and white-minority wealth gap we see today.
About 40 people attended the screening, which was followed by a lively audience discussion and a "Call for Action" to address racial disparities in the Tulsa area. This event was enhanced by replicating the successful TAFHP 2012 Children's Reading Opportunity Initiative.
In early April, Tulsa FPM trained nearly a dozen Keller Williams Realty staff to serve as volunteer readers.
FPM then coordinated with the Tulsa Housing Authority (THA) to send the trained volunteers to read in Recreation Centers at Sandy Park and Comanche Apartment complexes. Over 40 children participated in the reading program.
Each child received a Franklin the Fair Housing Fox coloring book and crayons provided by HUD's Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity Office. Volunteer readers included Tulsa Field Office Director, Sharon Gordon-Ribeiro; Tulsa HUD Senior Management Analyst, C. Lyn Larson; and Melody Garner, THA Senior Vice President for Housing Operations, among others.
The book is titled "The Fair Housing Five & the Haunted House," and is published by the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Assistance Council. Reading continues in local elementary schools for the remainder of April.