From the City of Aurora’s Poet Laureate, Assetou Xango, to first-time presenters, “HOME: Poetry Out Loud” provided a unique forum for raising awareness on the realities of homelessness and the value of a safe place to call home.


Event co-producer, Tiffany Christian, a CLOSE TO HOME partner, said “I really wanted to create a safe, but creative place for anyone to share what home means to them, and if they’ve been homeless, to talk about their experience. Creative poems are a way to get emotions out and to educate and help bring about change. We hope to bring together people of different ages, interests, ethnicities, and socioeconomic backgrounds to feel a sense of connection and community.”


“I have seen poetry enhance so many lives and change so many minds,” said Xango. “This artistic form of expression helps people realize they have a voice,” said Assetou Xango, whose tenure as Aurora’s Poet Laureate runs from February 2017 through January 2019.


“This effort blends three top priorities: striving to ensure all residents have a safe place to call home, making art accessible to everyone, and offering opportunities for folks to come together and be a part of our community,” said Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan. “Each of us needs a safe, stable, affordable home in order to move past challenges and take advantage of opportunities. Continuing to shine a light on the causes and realities of homelessness helps to inform and propel us toward more and better housing and support solutions.” Mayor Hogan, together with the Metro Mayors Caucus, are partners in the CLOSE TO HOME campaign.


Close to Home in the News

A video segment provided by Aurora TV, who provided coverage of HOME: Poetry Out Loud — an event which provided a venue to express and listen to spoken truth about homelessness and what having a home means. Click the button below to view the video.

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