West Park Cultural Center

Philadelphia, PA   |  www.westparkcultural.org


The West Park Cultural Center uses arts and culture as a central tool in programs that help youth tap their creative and academic potential and where residents can access the arts, education, and other development/support programs that contribute to their personal development.

Ruling year info


Founding Executive Director

Ms. Betty Lindley

Main address

5114 Parkside Avenue

Philadelphia, PA 19131 USA

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NTEE code info

Arts, Cultural Organizations - Multipurpose (A20)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Urban, Community (S31)

IRS filing requirement

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

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

West Park Cultural Center is dedicated to providing access to quality programming serving inner city neighborhoods where poverty and limited opportunities create a challenge. We turn no one away for financial reasons. Social and academic challenges are addressed thru the arts.

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?

Afterschool Ceramics

Our Afterschool Ceramics is located in the School of the Future with three 16 class sessions (fall, winter, spring) teaching hand building and the potter's wheel.

The Ceramics Class is designed to teach basic and advanced technical skills needed to use clay as a creative medium and give the Learners new strategies that take advantage of and develop their latent visual-thinking abilities.  The process of designing and building works in clay is used to explore and develop the Learners’ creative thinking process and to help them to focus their ideas and intent while building technical skills. They are introduced to the uses of ceramic materials in science, industry and contemporary life, the techniques of several clay artists and some historical clay works.

The Learners (ages 6-18) have several opportunities to experience different work processes and problem solving approaches. They are coached through the design process of sketching, refining their ideas and testing the feasibility of their work by making small prototypes before they begin to build their piece. In other projects the Learners are encouraged to work more spontaneously and intuitively and to take risks with the clay materials. Throughout the class, they are guided to identify what they want to express, decide what is relevant and necessary for that expression.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people

A four-week summer arts and nature program for children ages 5-12 in partnership with the Fairmount Park Horticulture Center serving as the program venue. Three artist-counselors design and implement projects for the three ages groups in visual art, dance, film, and photography. The camp also includes swimming and field trips.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people

An annual free one day public event featuring youth and professional artists with dance and music performances on two stages, arts activities, special artist installations, historical trolley tours of the Centennial District in West Fairmount Park and many art and craft vendors.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Arts for Literacy is designed to infuse arts and artists into the school curriculum with a focus on high school English classrooms, Actors and spoken word artists actively engage students in the written word. By using the arts to bring emotion and character to the text they are studying, Students are able to connect with the written words in a way that may have been a challenge previously. There are usually two classroom visits for four different classes studying the same material over a two-day period.

Population(s) Served
At-risk youth

The danceLogic program combines dance and computer coding on Saturdays during the school year. Advancing our mission to use the arts for learning, the pilot was launched in 2018 to engage teen girls of color in STEM. The girls acquire dance skills and industry standard coding language that inspires their choreography. The program culminates with a their performance at our annual West Park Arts Fest. The purpose of the class is to increase the number of girls in STEM education and further demonstrate the value of the arts as tools for learning.

Population(s) Served
Adolescent girls
People of African descent
People of Latin American descent

During the pandemic, the organization transitioned to virtual and added new afterschool arts opportunities that included:
Spoken Word
Theatre Arts

Population(s) Served
People of African descent
At-risk youth
Low-income people

Where we work


Great Nonprofits Badge 2017


Organization Partnership Award 2017

Fairmount Park Conservancy

Affiliations & memberships

Fairmount Park Conservancy Partnership Award 2017

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 attendees present at rallies/events

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

Adults, Children and youth, Adolescents

Related Program

West Park Arts Fest

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Context Notes

Our annual West Park Arts Fest attendance has been increasing each year with the exception of 2020 when it was cancelled due to Covid-19. This is a Free family-friendly event open to the public.

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.

Goal: to give low-income children and youth accessible and top quality learning experiences that help advance their academic, creative, social, and emotional development.

Maintain program excellence
Maintain core partnerships and explore new partnerships
Provide program access to under-served and financially challenged populations
Maintain and further develop a fully engaged board of directors
Create a succession plan and build revenue and staff to support succession

1. Implement afterschool arts classes
2. Use the arts as tools for learning in the classroom
3. Continue and grow the annual West Park Arts Fest with the theme "Friends Across Cultures" to a signature event in West Fairmount Park
4. Continue the policy of partnership and collaboration to increase our capacity to deliver programs and increase the number of people we serve
5. Provide on-going education opportunities

West Park Cultural Center currently has three program venue partners (School of the Future, Fairmount Park Horticulture Center, and Community Education Center (CEC). The organization has an executive director with 50 years of arts management and fundraising experience supported by a Youth Program Manager, Summer Program Manager, PR Manager, and four professional artist/educators who facilitate out of school time programming with classes in ceramics, art construction and painting, film and dance. Each year the organization brings up to 30 arts, cultural and community partners together to present the West Park Arts Fest and in 2018 was joined by Fairmount Park Conservancy and Mural Arts Philadelphia as presenters for the event.

- Afterschool arts classes are operating on schedule at the School of the Future and additionally at the Matha Washington School
- "Arts for Literacy" in the classroom involved 2 artists and engaged 400 students during the 2018-2019 school year
- Our danceLogic program received national attention with a feature on "CBS This Morning" and generated over $4,000 in individual donations
- West Park Arts Fest 2019 had 5,000 attendees, 135 student and professional artists performing
- Core partnerships are operating at optimum levels

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 collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    A formal parent group was formed and is managed by a parent whose children and participated in our programs for the last 6 years. She created an instructional video on how to create a parent login on our website and use the parent dashboard. Zoom parent meetings were held to walk parents through the instructional video and answer questions. The parent dashboard includes a feedback survey.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

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

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback,


West Park Cultural Center

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


Connect with nonprofit leaders


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


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

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West Park Cultural Center

Board of directors
as of 02/22/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Ms. Kathleen Lee

Board co-chair

Ms. Leslie Walker

Acting Executive Director, Philadelphia Free Library

Term: 2019 - 2022

Thomas Phillips

Financial analyst and Educator retired

Betty Lindley

Arts Administrator

Michael Burch

Editor and Publisher, Parkside Journal

Kathleen Lee

Educator and Associate of the Trudy Haynes Show

Beverly Gross-Spencer

Development Professional

Norman Lane

Retired Educator

Jasmine Bullock

Youth Program Director, The Franklin Institute

Cynthia Bluford

Retired Educator

Dianne Thompson


Tunisia Garnett-Bettis

Regional Manager, Primerica Financial Services

Naomi Studevan

Education & Behavioral Health Consultant

Brian Walls

Financial Representative, Northwestern Mutual

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 5/24/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation