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PBS高端访谈:底特律努力帮助无家可归者

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AMNA NAWAZ: Across the country, communities struggle to create jobs and end homelessness. One Detroit nonprofit has found a unique solution to help address both challenges. Special correspondent Mary Ellen Geist has the story.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: Casandra Grimes has been homeless for a year. But she has started to stitch her life back together.

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CASANDRA GRIMES, Seamstress: I try to just make my life better than it was before.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: Grimes discovered a unique opportunity, working at the Empowerment Plan, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending homelessness through employment. The organization was founded by Veronika Scott.

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VERONIKA SCOTT, CEO, Empowerment Plan: Both of my parents struggled with employment and addiction and poverty, and so it is creating an opportunity I wish had been given to my own family.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: While conducting research to design a coat for homeless people, Scott was confronted by a woman who told her that she didn't need a coat; she needed a job. That led Scott to launch the Empowerment Plan, which offers both employment and a unique product for people in need, a durable garment that can be transformed from a shoulder bag, to a coat, to a sleeping bag, and back to a shoulder bag.

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VERONIKA SCOTT: The coat on its own is a Band-Aid for a systemic issue, and what really has the impact is hiring the people that would need it in the first place.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: Casandra Grimes admits the job has its challenges.

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CASANDRA GRIMES: You got to focus when you thread, because I kept on breaking the needle when I first started. But I manage it now.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: Managing the work-life balance is a part of employment at the Empowerment Plan. Employees spend 60 percent of their paid time working and 40 percent improving their education and life skills.

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VERONIKA SCOTT: Empowerment Plan started off as an education for me, and it really has evolved into creating that same opportunity for education for everybody.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: Grimes is studying for her GED, and plans to attend college and pursue a career as a seamstress. Employees work at the Empowerment Plan for two years, then transition out into the work force. Grimes has a year left, and the organization is helping her find an apartment of her own.

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CASANDRA GRIMES: I really do feel empowered when I am here, because I can get a good job in the future knowing I have got my education. I love what I do. They helped me get back on my feet too.

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MARY ELLEN GEIST: For the PBS NewsHour, I'm Mary Ellen Geist in Detroit, Michigan.

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重点单词   查看全部解释    
impact ['impækt,im'pækt]

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n. 冲击(力), 冲突,影响(力)
vt.

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needle ['ni:dl]

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n. 针
vt. 用针缝,激怒,嘲弄

 
garment ['gɑ:mənt]

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n. 衣服
vt. 给 ... 披上衣服,覆上

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stitch [stitʃ]

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n. 一针,疼痛,碎布条
v. 缝合

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issue ['iʃju:]

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n. 发行物,期刊号,争论点
vi. & vt

 
poverty ['pɔvəti]

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n. 贫困,贫乏

 
correspondent [.kɔri'spɔndənt]

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n. 通讯记者,通信者
adj. 与 ...

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pursue [pə'sju:]

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v. 追捕,追求,继续从事

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creative [kri'eitiv]

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adj. 创造性的

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analysis [ə'næləsis]

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n. 分析,解析

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