PLATINUM2023

COMMUNITY-WORD PROJECT INC

I have a voice, my voice is powerful, my voice can change the world.

aka CWP   |   New York, NY   |  www.communitywordproject.org

Mission

Our mission is to facilitate culturally responsive, multidisciplinary art programs for students, teaching artists, and communities to develop and amplify their voices and creative skills. We envision a world where all artists and learners work together to recognize and celebrate the power of their creative voices to manifest a more equitable future.

Ruling year info

2000

Executive Director

Michele Kotler

Main address

11 Broadway, Suite 508

New York, NY 10004 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

13-4114145

NTEE code info

Arts Education/Schools (A25)

Secondary/High School (B25)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

CWP addresses the learning needs of K-12 students in New York City. In serving this community CWP has confronted the challenge that only 59% of students in New York City’s low-income neighborhoods are proficient in the skills they need to succeed academically and in life. For students who are learning English for the first time; managing disabilities; or experiencing instability in their living situation, the challenges of learning are particularly acute. Often these students have learning needs that remain unmet by their schools. CWP has deep, attentive, partnerships with schools and partner organizations in order to support this student need within the school, and in the communities surrounding the schools.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Collaborative Arts Residency Program

In our Collaborative Arts Residency Program (CAR), Teaching Artists (TAs) integrate creative writing and visual arts, music, dance, or theater into the curriculum to help students improve their literacy and develop creative, critical thinking, and socio-emotional skills. CAR takes place in New York City public schools, both in-class and after-school programming with K-12 students. Students work on specialized projects such as creating published anthologies, murals, and more. We believe that when a learning space is transformed by the arts, young people thrive because they find new ways to learn, to be heard, and to connect with one another and their communities.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
At-risk youth

Teaching Artist Project (TAP) provides a 25-week Teaching Artists' training program, placing trained teaching artists into New York City classrooms. TAP also conducts Summer Institute, a three day intensive training for experienced teaching artist nationwide. CWP provides additional trainings for advanced teaching artists, helping them to strengthen their skills and learn new teaching tools in preparation for the new school year.

Population(s) Served
Artists and performers
Students

CWP's professional development opportunities include workshops for public school teachers, after-school leaders, and youth workers to help them to integrate creativity and community-building exercises into classroom and after-school curricula and programs.

Population(s) Served
Adults

15 students work in close partnership with staff from CWP and NYU's Tandon School of Engineering to engage in design thinking alongside multidisciplinary artistic and curricular development integrating technology and the arts. CWP also provides students in the program with college and career development opportunities such as college visits and tech sector networking.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents
At-risk youth

Where we work

Awards

Partner in Excellence 2009

Young Audiences New York

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of students who demonstrate writing ability

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth

Related Program

Collaborative Arts Residency Program

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Partner classroom teachers and participants 3 grade & up complete pre- and post-surveys that help assess writing ability. CWP teaching artists also reflect and provide examples of growth in writing.

Number of children who have a sense of their own feelings and an ability to express empathy for others

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth

Related Program

Collaborative Arts Residency Program

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Participants in grades 3+ take pre- and post- program self-assessment that focuses on SEL.

Number of children who have the ability to use language for expression and to communicate with others

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth

Related Program

Collaborative Arts Residency Program

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We conduct pre- and post-program assessment with teachers and students on this metric. Teachers consistently see students' increased ability to use literary devices as well as more expansive language.

Number of students with good social and leadership skills and self-discipline

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Collaborative Arts Residency Program

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We conduct a pre- and post-program SEL self-assessment with students that includes self-management.

Number of students who demonstrate the desire to succeed in the academic setting

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We conduct a pre- and post-program SEL self-assessment with students that includes self-management and academic self-efficacy.

Number of teachers who demonstrate effective teaching practices

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults

Related Program

Teaching Artist Project (TAP)

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This is assessed based on teaching artist pre- and post-program assessment and mentorship observation.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Community-Word Project aims to ensure that young people in New York City can envision, invest in, and build a community different from the one failing to meet their needs. The key goals of CWP's residency programs are to:

-Make the classroom a safe, creative space where each student feels challenged and supported to put ideas forward with confidence and discover the power of working together.

-Offer multiple ways to engage different kinds of learners, and provide a creative learning environment not often available in our culture of high-stakes testing.

-Engage highly-trained multidisciplinary teaching artists in New York City school classrooms

-Provide a sustained experience for students through a 10 to 25 week classroom presence during each school year and a continuing to “bridge" programs from their elementary to middle school years.

-Help NYC's public school students meet the New York State Common Core Standards in English Language Arts for Writing and Literacy.

-Focus on literacy by bringing a writer alongside another artist into every classroom to ensure that each student practices articulating and expressing their ideas, concerns and aspirations.

-Promote equal access for students of all learning levels, especially English as a New Language learners and students with Special Needs.

- Help youth to individually and collectively articulate and express social justice issues of importance to them.

-Providing professional development workshops for classroom teachers, after-school leaders, and youth workers to integrate creativity into the classroom and after-school programs.

By working collaboratively in a safe and positive classroom environment, CWP students learn to think creatively and analytically, embrace differences, solve problems, and confidently share ideas so that they are better prepared to make positive change in their communities and their lives.

The heart of CWP’s activities is the empowerment through the arts of students annually in schools, libraries and homeless shelters. We operate in NYC neighborhoods where 70% of residents live in poverty and students struggle with the effects of underperforming schools; unstable households; and the linguistic challenges of recent immigration.

Our actions to achieve the empowerment we seek are threefold:

In our Collaborative Arts Residency Program (CAR), Teaching Artists (TAs) integrate creative writing and visual arts, music, dance, or theater into the curriculum to help students improve their literacy and develop creative, critical thinking, and socio-emotional skills.

The Teaching Artist Project (TAP) provides an opportunity for artists and educators to engage in a self reflective process while in a supportive, artist empowered and creative-inquiry-based community. In the program, participants have the freedom to unpack their own pedagogy, in service of their justice oriented and student centered teaching practice. Our hope is to leverage our arts education models’ collective impact and scale, through continued collaboration with our cohort of 15 peer arts organizations such as Brooklyn Arts Council, DreamYard Project, and National Dance Institute.

CWP’s professional development sessions prepare classroom teachers, after-school leaders, and youth professionals with the expertise to integrate creative writing and collaborative arts into their curricula.

Guided by these outcomes, CWP measures a number of indicators of student skills development, using formal observations twice over the course of each residency to ensure that benchmarks towards our student outcomes are being achieved (for example, students are taking leadership roles in collaborative projects, students are listening respectfully to each other's ideas, students understand the importance of revising their work), to assess teaching artists' classroom management and teaching skills, and to give the teaching artists feedback...

Along with the surveys, Community-Word Project uses several other methods to assess the success of our residency program. Before the residency begins, our evaluation manager administers an initial assessment tool that includes a short written description of an image. The tool is then administered at the end of the residency in order to see how much CWP students have improved in CWP's five essential outcomes (Critical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Literacy, Emotional Intelligence) as well as their overall writing techniques. In addition, three times each year, we collect writing samples and evaluate them based on CWP-developed rubrics in order to assess the quality of the work in connection with lesson plan that generated the work.

CWP focuses on measurable impact and continuous program improvement by using multiple methods of evaluation. We take a deep, individualized look at arts residency and training effectiveness in order to maintain program strengths and identify areas in need of improvement. Each tool and the corresponding outcomes and indicators continue to be revised based on program outcomes and previous evaluations. This data-driven approach ensures that our programs strengthen Teaching Artist (TA) practices and student aptitude.

CWP's 20-21 Evaluation Report:

Our outcomes from the past year continue to encourage our work and demonstrate the dire need for arts education in the communities we serve. The power of the arts continues to grow skills in Literacy, Critical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Emotional Intelligence, and Engagement Citizenship. For example, last year at the beginning of their residency students reported that only 11% of them could create new and meaningful ideas by using a range of idea creation techniques such as brainstorming, adopting, adapting and researching, yet at the end of the residency the same students reported that 47% of them now felt confident in that skill. Also, at the beginning of the residency students reported that only 11% felt that they could behave empathetically toward their classroom community, and at the end of the residency those same students jumped to 60%. Overall, 88% of students grew in more than one social emotional learning capacity, which is particularly meaningful during the second school year impacted by COVID-19. As one fourth grade student said about their experience in CAR, “I learned that I should speak up more because at the end of our lessons we say we have a voice… which you can use to share opinions and make ideas to make the world a better place.”




How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection

Financials

COMMUNITY-WORD PROJECT INC
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

COMMUNITY-WORD PROJECT INC

Board of directors
as of 01/23/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Joan Sapinsley

Fordham

Term: 2019 -


Board co-chair

Tracey Bey-Johnson

Trace Paper Co.

Term: 2020 -

Michele Kotler

Community-Word Project

Marcus Vinicius Ribeiro

Principal - Americas, PRISA

Dillon Cohen

Art Dealer

Susanne Russotto

AllianceBernstein

Alex Perry

Ernst & Young

Jason Lynch

JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Rossanna Ionescu

TD Bank

Joan Sapinsley

Fordham University

Andrew Ho

Global Strategy Group

Sam Tortora

BlackRock

Tracey Bey-Johnson

Trace Paper Co.

Colleen Lima

BNYMellon

Jessica Hogue

Innovid

Monica Chen

Bloomberg

Shannon Nelson-Tai

BlackRock

Lori Bullock

DigitasHealth

Deepak Shrivastava

The Flex Co.

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/21/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Person with a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 12/21/2022

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.