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Do Something: Pack Your Bags

Pack a bag lunch to hand out to the homeless. Plus, laugh it forward with progressives, walk for peace, and more ways to be an awesome citizen this week.

Every Monday we round up a handful of fun ways to get involved throughout the week to make your city better. Have ideas for upcoming events? Email tips here. And find more evergreen ways to get engaged in our handy Do Something guides.

What Happened to Congress?

Take solace in the fact that you’re not the only one with questions about what’s going on in Washington. Find out how Congress can (or can’t) take its power back with a panel of experts at the National Constitution Center, featuring Josh Chafetz, author of Congress’s Constitution; Carl Hulse, chief Washington correspondent for The New York Times; and David Mayhew, author of “The Imprint of Congress.” The conversation will be moderated by Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center. Monday, June 19, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m., $10 for members, teachers and students, $18 for non-members, National Constitution Center.

(DIS)PLACE Your Arts

On Thursday, Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture continues its exploration of what it means to be displaced, from another culture, another country or in your own city. The (DIS)PLACED Arts Workshop at Penn’s Perry World House features installation artist Buthayna Ali (from Damascus via Skype); local musicians Kinan Abou-afech and Hafez Kotain; and DC-based poet Nazem El Sayed, exploring themes of displacement and identity. After a discussion of these ideas and their work, each artist will lead a workshop with audience members to create something of your own. Thursday, June 22, 3 – 6 p.m., free, Perry World House, 3803 Locust Walk at Penn Campus.

Laugh it Forward

Torn between whether to laugh or cry at the state of national politics? Make the choice a little easier with a night of cocktails and comedy. “Laugh-it-Forward,” hosted by the New Leaders Council (NLC), supports young progressive leaders in Philadelphia. Each year, the NLC welcomes a new class of leaders in business and politics; proceeds will go towards training the current and future fellows—something needed now more than ever. The event will feature a live comedy show, local Philly food, and an open bar. Saturday, June 24, 6-9 p.m., tickets start at $50, Asian Arts Initiative, 1219 Vine Street.

Walk For Peace

First walk; then feast. Saturday at noon, the Neighbor’s Walk for peace, unity and community power takes off from 20th Street & Susquehanna Avenue in North Philly as a way to raise awareness for the work of rebuilding the neighborhood among community members. Then, at 2 p.m., the 6th Annual Community and Family Day commences at North Philly Peace Park, with free food and fun for the whole family. The event will have volunteer registration stations for people to sign up to help their neighborhoods in various fields of work, as well as information tables from different community organizations. The walk starts at noon at 22nd and Susquehanna, and will end at the park, where speakers, music, children’s activities, and the aforementioned free food, will be waiting. Saturday, June 24, 12 p.m., free, 22nd St., and Susquehanna Ave and North Philly Peace Park 22nd and Jefferson.

Pack A Bag Lunch

School’s out, which means no more packing brown bag lunches for your kids—if you’re lucky enough to have food for brown bag lunches. But don’t give up the habit yet. This Saturday, fill up a bookbag with 5 to 10 paper bag lunches and waters to hand out to homeless people. Tim Turner, CEO of the nonprofit One Kind Act A Month, runs this drive every fourth Saturday of the month, and suggests people bring turkey sandwiches or the classic PB&J. Put on a pair of comfortable shoes and come hand out lunches with other volunteers, or drop off food with the team between 12 and 12:10 p.m at 9th and Market Street, where the group will meet before heading out. Saturday, June 24, 12-2 p.m., 9th and Market streets.

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