Ricki Ruiz

One humble and hopeful 21 year old community outreach organizer for Rockwood Initiative turned the cracked cement of the neglected roller skating rink into the clean asphalt of the new Snake Park futsal court. As a kid growing up in Rockwood, he used to jump that old fence to play with his friends—now it’s a space that belongs to Rockwood, to everyone, with a gate that’s always open. In Rockwood, people tend to live in their separate neighborhoods, but the futsal court is the great leveler. It’s where the borders disappear, and the communities meet face to face, shake hands, and compete.

 

This is an excerpt from Rockwood Stories, a partnership between Centennial Park School and Portland State University in the Spring of 2016.  Writing credit: Zachary Schomburg.  Photography: George Berberis, Christine Dong, and Ethan Allen Smith.  See more at:friendtorship.org.