WELCOME Records

WELCOME (Westsiders and Eastsiders Let’s Come Together) was founded in 1978 in Cleveland, Ohio, by teachers, parents, and concerned citizens to create an atmosphere of peace and racial cooperation in response to the possibility of violence during the desegregation of the Cleveland Public School. WELCOME activities, which involved community centers and churches, included a series of bridgewalks across the Detroit Superior Bridge, the distribution of tee-shirts, the establishment of WELCOME committees at each school, and WELCOME wagons that visited neighborhoods. Once desegregation took place, WELCOME clubs were formed in the newly desegregated schools. The most active students in each club formed the citywide WELCOME Leadership Insitute in 1980, funded by the Cleveland and Gund Foundations. In 1984, funding ended, and the Leadership Institute ceased to exist. The collection consists of correspondence, programs, bylaws, desegregation studies, financial materials, minutes, newsletter, pamphlets, permits, petitions, press releases, foundation proposals, reports, testimonials, and newspaper clippings.

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