(Photo via facebook.com/whatsPOPPYN; photo has been cropped)
Have you noticed how drastically North Philly has changed in the past few years? If not, you’re probably not from North Philly.
Youth media program POPPYN — that’s Presenting Our Perspective on Philly Youth News — is a program of the University Community Collaborative at Temple University that gives Philadelphia high school students the chance to tell their side of the story on a topic of interest through visual media.
In the most recent episode, POPPYN producers trek into North, South and West Philly to discuss housing and gentrification, defining the latter as the “transformation of low-income and working class neighborhoods, driving up housing and other real estate prices and causing the displacement of long-term residents, businesses and institutions.”
One snippet from Terri, a West Philly resident: “I’ve seen the neighborhood change drastically. I’ve seen it go from mostly African American to now, there’s a lot of Caucasians, it’s a lot of college students.”
And Adesh, in North Philly: “I think this is an area that, even like, five years ago, you wouldn’t have really seen a lot of white people walking around, definitely not a lot of students. And now you have a lot of new businesses coming in that are very appealing to sort of a hipster-y crowd.”
Temple is noted for playing its own role in gentrification — and declined to be interviewed on-camera for the episode, according to POPPYN Coordinator Nuala Cabral, though the university did provide an official statement that’s included in the episode.
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The episode will air on PhillyCAM’s public access channels on Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. for the next few months, Cabral said, and POPPYN is reaching out to local government officials to schedule screenings and public discussions.
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