Saint Louis Story Stitchers Artists Collective

We erase real and perceived divisions through cultural exploration and arts practice — by stitching together our city.

aka Saint Louis Story Stitchers   |   Saint Louis, MO   |  https://storystitchers.org/

Mission

Mission: To document Saint Louis through art and word to promote understanding, civic pride, intergenerational relationships and literacy. Goal: Collective artists work alongside twenty 16-24 year old African American youth living in urban economically disadvantaged areas to collect stories, reframe and retell them using the arts and storytelling to promote a better educated, more peaceful and caring society.

Notes from the nonprofit

Saint Louis Story Stitchers current focus is aimed at addressing pressing public health issues including gun violence through contemporary storytelling. Projects create a platform for community engagement through an artistic lens and with it the Saint Louis Story Stitchers work to shift perceptions and realities and bring hope to the Saint Louis community. We erase real and perceived divisions through cultural exploration and arts practice — by stitching together our city. Story Stitchers in the News: https://storystitchers.org/media/

Ruling year info

2014

President and Executive Director

Susan Colangelo

Main address

616 N Skinker Blvd

Saint Louis, MO 63130 USA

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EIN

61-1750223

NTEE code info

(Arts, Cultural Organizations - Multipurpose) (A20)

IRS filing requirement

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

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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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?

Pick the City UP

A unique brand of urban storytelling featuring live hip hop and spoken word on public health issues facing St. Louis. Innovative public performances take place in St. Louis neighborhoods, parks, cultural institutions, and city-wide festivals.
Story Stitchers touches the lives of 100 youth each year with the largest impact on youth who sustain participation over many months. Programs are youth-led: they plan, discuss, rehearse, record, perform, and exhibit alongside adult artists in the organization. Youth work towards a better community while expanding their artistic and business skills. Most activities focus on the communities in which youth live; the youth serve as a conduit to these communities and drive Story Stitchers programming decisions.

Population(s) Served
Age groups
At-risk youth
People of African descent
Adolescents

Where we work

Awards

Accelerator Award 2021

The Lewis Prize For Music

The Charity Pot 2020

Lush Corporation

Neighborhood Grant 2020

Starbucks Foundation

Youth at Risk Crime Prevention 2020

City of St. Louis

3-Year Grant 2020

Spirit of St. Louis Women's Fund

3-Year Grant 2018

Missouri Foundation for Health

3-Year Grant 2018

Steward Family Foundation

Covid Fund 2020

Youthbridge Community Foundation

Program 2020

Missouri Arts Council

CARES Act 2020

Missouri Humanities Council

Program 2020

Regional Arts Commission

refect/project 2021

Mid Ameria Arts Alliance

The Divided City 2020

Washington University in St. Louis

PNC Program Grant 2020

Arts and Education Council

Affiliations & memberships

Missouri Arts Educators Alliance 2021

St. Louis Area Violence Prevention Commission 2021

Kranzberg Arts Foundation 2021

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

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.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Story Stitchers engages 16-24 year old black youth from low income communities to co-create art with established artists with similar backgrounds. Story Stitchers has a long history of engaging the target population to work towards a more socially responsive, culturally sensitive, and safe community using art as a medium to hold difficult conversations. One hundred and twelve youth (80% St. Louis City, 20% St. Louis County and 2% East Illinois) were served. Adult artists reflect the demographics of the youth we target. Of the 7 adult artists who are committed to this organization, 6 are Black and 1 is White; 5 are male and 2 are female.

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

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees,

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

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, 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, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    Story Stitchers contracts with a professional evaluation specialist since 2020 to create questions for surveys and focus sessions and to write semi-annual reports for the organization and its funders. We use the information gathered to guide changes in programming and to develop new programs.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

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

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    Story Stitchers is a youth-led organization, in that youth guide the direction of the focus of the work, such as gun violence prevention, the neighborhoods where we engage, and the new directions that we move towards, such as providing additional safe spaces for youth to gather, learn, create, and work with mentors. The youth and community provide feedback which guides the leadership and the board towards culturally relevant work that can create systems changes desired by the target population such as racial equity, ending gun violence, and ending implicit racial biases black adolescents and young adults.

  • 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 demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), 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,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

Saint Louis Story Stitchers Artists Collective
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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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  • 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.

Saint Louis Story Stitchers Artists Collective

Board of directors
as of 5/3/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Susan Colangelo

Artist and Volunteer

Term: 2014 - 2021

Breona Butler

Ameren

Maggie Wu Mitchell, CPA

WellsFargo Advisors

Tausha Dirks

Edward Jones

Nichole Dawsey

PreventEd

Michelle Fleming

Orthopedic Yoga Therapy

Chris Hansen

Kranzberg Arts Foundation

Keisa Monroe Johnson, Esq.

Anthem, Inc.

Ben Kessler

Webster University

Hedwig Lee, Ph.D.

Washington University in St. Louis

Amanda Shields

Missouri Botanical Garden

Cassandria White

Compass and Levy Catering

John Wright, Jr.

St. Louis Public School District

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? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • 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? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 05/03/2021

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

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/03/2021

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 analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • 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 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 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 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.