What if high school students analyzed the narrative structure of local non-profits instead of traditional texts?
What if students used their innate creativity to construct products for those non-profits instead of writing final essays?
This is NewComm: a radical and transformative social entrepreneurship program.
Founded in 2014, NewComm is a program that uses the study of literature as the starting point to design and implement purposeful community initiatives for an area non-profit organization. By deconstructing the narrative structures of fiction and non-fiction texts, students are able to use their findings to analyze the human concerns that impact and shape their community area and our partner non-profit organization. Towards the end of the course, using our literary discussions and Design Thinking processes, students develop, share, and implement products that addresses our partner non-profit's most pressing needs.
This is important: We are not a social entrepreneurship program that concludes with PowerPoint presentations in pretty auditoriums.
Yeah, we do have a nice presentation, but we are all about real work. So our students execute on all ideas offered at our presentation, and we ensure our products are sustainable for years to come.
Check out our very first NewComm project: a re-imagined and re-designed website for our partner Tree House Books. The students were inspired by the spirit, heart, and magic of Tree House and wanted to deliver a website that highlighted this. Check it out HERE.
As part of The New Community Project, we launched a media project called INVISIBLE/VISIBLE. INVISIBLE/VISIBLE is a suite of podcasts led by young people in high school that investigates the social and political concerns that affects us right NOW. Our current story series is #BLKGRLMAGIC, a podcast led by young black girls as they investigate and unpack their place in a predominately white school. Check them out below.
Subscribe to our podcasts HERE.
In the summer of 2016, we launched our very first free community workshop series (urban gardening!) in the Bella Vista neighborhood of Philadelphia. The goal was simple: bring together people from all corners of the neighborhood and have them learn and build with one another. This aligns with the larger goals of NewComm: we believe stronger communities, ones devoid of bigotry and hate, are built through empathy--and empathy is built through conversation and collaboration.
This summer, in an effort to celebrate our partners at Community Partnership School's eventual move to Brewerytown, we are offering complimentary yoga, meditation, and dance classes at SoundSpace Studio! Each class is dedicated to one of CPS's core values: curiosity, compassion, and courage. Come join us!
Summer Workshops are over! We will be back Summer 2018!!
Stay tuned for more info!
The NewComm logo is a BOUQUET OF EMBRACES. It represents the varied ways each of us join communities: openly, delicately, violently, submissively, & closed. At NewComm, we believe we need to engage ALL of these people so that we can build the kind of community that can set us all free.
Join #TeamNewComm by purchasing a shirt and wearing it proudly! The money we raise will help grow our community workshop series here in Philly and beyond!!!
sweatshirts sold out for now! check in again soon!