ECHO Award Winners - 2001

Paige Bentley built social capital by initiating "Beyond Your Blanket," social picnics that were held during the spring, summer and fall in Grace Court. Diverse ages, races and neighborhoods came together and moved "beyond their blankets" to meet and talk with one another. The environment allowed people to get acquainted, begin to trust one another and recognize that each is connected.

Learmond Hayes, Jr. and the Tri-City Relays Track Club developed the Project T.E.A.C.H. program, a tutoring and mentoring program for students and athletes from Winston-Salem elementary and middle schools. Relationships across racial boundaries are created between Wake Forest University students and grade school students through year-long tutoring, mentoring, and coaching. The children, who are mostly African-American, gain friendships and knowledge to help them improve their economic situations. They also receive the opportunity to further their educations through athletic scholarships. The Wake Forest students, who are mostly European-American, learn first-hand about the East Winston community. Both groups have learned from personal experience to transcend pre-existing prejudices and stereotyping.

Marjorie Joyner Northup has worked to build and improve interracial relationships in the community since childhood. During the sixties, she was active in promoting racial integration in the Forsyth County schools and other civil-rights causes at the local level. Today, through her creative and persistent efforts, she was able to position Reynolda House Museum of American Art to be a community leader in developing "bridging" social capital, through innovative art programs for diverse groups, including prison inmates, at-risk youth, low-income populations and, most recently, Spanish-speaking families and individuals. Northup founded "Examining our Prejudices Through American Art," at the Reynolda House. The exhibit was funded by The Winston-Salem Foundation. Through her work at Reynolda House, on several community boards and committees, Northup has been a model for the practice of building social capital.

Jeff Smith created "Smitty's Notes" with the idea of informing the Winston-Salem community of local events and encouraging social connections through the activities listed in his electronic newsletter and printed in Style magazine. Smith also hosts regular informal monthly dinners called "Dinner with Eight and Smitty." These dinners are designed to connect people from different backgrounds and particularly target those who are new to the community.

Fred Terry is a leader with a great gift of listening and creating new alliances between people who see their differences more than their similarities. He has worked to bring the African-American, European-American, and Latino people together in the southeast side of Winston-Salem. As a member of the Board of Aldermen, an advisor for the Presbyterian Youth Interracial Dialogue, and volunteer for the Multicultural Festival at King Plaza, his support has created trust within the community and has empowered people to act on their own. He has used his inherent dignity and wisdom to bring harmony whenever and wherever he is involved with the community.


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