All over the world, people are moving into cities. As this trend continues to take on momentum, many American cities are experiencing a renaissance. My hometown of Birmingham is not an exception. This city is experiencing an emergence of refurbished high-rise apartments, beautifully designed green spaces, trendy restaurants and a brand new sports stadium.[i] As the city center buzzes with new life, more people continue to move into the city.
While urban renewal remains a robust trend throughout North America, the renewal does not translate into solving all the problems of our inner cities. Vast areas with overwhelming, chronic needs remain. Poverty, drugs, prostitution, addiction, and violent crime continue to thrive. Behind it all stands a long line of broken lives.