WEST PARK CULTURAL CENTER

Rating: 4.92 stars   26 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture, Children & Youth, Job Training, Environment

Location: 5114 Parkside Avenue (mailing address) Philadelphia PA 19131 USA

Mission: The West Park Cultural Center promotes a thriving West Park community by using 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, helping them come together as a strong community.
Results: West Park Cultural Center reaches more than 1,800 children, youth and adults annually through afterschool arts classes, "Arts for Literacy" in the classroom, Camp Ginkgo/Ginkgo Academy, West Park Arts Fest and adult development classes.
Target demographics: children, youth and families
Direct beneficiaries per year: 1,800 children, youth and adults
Geographic areas served: West Philadelphia
Programs: Afterschool ceramics and music, Arts for Literacy during the school day, Camp Ginkgo/Ginkgo Academy, Adult Development, and the annual West Park Arts Fest.

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I have worked with WPCC for the last two years as an instructor for their music recording program, and have nothing but excellent things to say of the organization. The program I worked with has been able to help several students record and produce their own music, share their artistic expressions with their communities and prepare for further pursuits in recording arts.

In addition to their after school programming, the annual West Park Arts Fest they organize succeeds in providing world-class arts and entertainment without losing sight of the goal of cross-cultural inclusion and expression. It is for this excellence that they remain one of the premiere cultural/philanthropic organizations in Philadelphia.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have been taking ceramic classes at West Park for a year. It is an excellent program with a hard working instructor and volunteers. Classes are very organized and frequent firing schedules promptly visualize student's efforts. Specially at the time Art Education is cut off at many schools, I highly recommend this program for youth as well as adults.

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Rating: 5 stars  

It is a great event for both the kids participated the program and those who came as audiences. My kids involved in the Chinese yoyo performance. They got a great chance to demonstrate a very ancient Chinese toy which can help to develop body coordination yet very fun to play. It is very meaningful nowadays since the technology dragged all kids to the tiny screen of the electronic devices. I am glad to see a lot of interests from the audience especially from young kids. West Park Festival provided a great opportunity for community kids to explore a wild variety of performing arts. Please keep this culture and do it again next year. It is a great event for both the kids participated the program and those who came as audiences. My kids involved in the Chinese yoyo performance. They got a great chance to demonstrate a very ancient Chinese toy which can help to develop body coordination yet very fun to play. It is very meaningful nowadays since the technology dragged all kids to the tiny screen of the electronic devices. I am glad to see a lot of interests from the audience especially from young kids. West Park Festival provided a great opportunity for community kids to explore a wild variety of performing arts. Please keep this culture and do it again next year.

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

West Park Cultural Center gives young people a chance to develop their visual and performing arts skills and share their talents with the community. This fills a unique need at a time when public school budgets are being slashed and arts programs are being eliminated.

As an instructor for West Park, I am delighted to participate in the programs that provide a sorely needed place for people of all ages to share the joy of learning something new. Every June, the community then gathers at an amazing Arts Festival to show their talents and encourage others to participate. For many it is their first opportunity to perform before a receptive and supportive audience.
I am proud to be a part of West Park Cultural Center and its work supporting the community.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I am writing to recommend the West Park Cultural Center and Patty Bulack's work for that organization, a group that was a great partner for a large scale project I ran in 2014. I work for Shakespeare in Clark Park and Team Sunshine Performance Corporation, both performance based non-profits in Philadelphia. Shakespeare in Clark Park has presented a free, outdoor Shakespeare production in West Philadelphia for the past nine years. This year for our production of Henry IV, we invited one hundred volunteers to be in the battle scenes, getting a front row seat to the professional artistic process and being part of a performance that will be seen by thousands of people.

Patty Bulack, as a community liaison and representative of West Park Cultural Center, helped to develop the performance piece, connect us with interested youth, and spread the word about opportunities for people to be involved. We worked with many partners, and her advice, commitment, and vast and diverse network was unparalleled.

We hosted our "warrior photo booth" with costumes and props at many festivals and fairs throughout the summer as we recruited these volunteers. One of our more successful days was at the West Park Arts festival, which was not only well organized, highly attended, and in a fantastic location, it has that intangible energy of community and celebration that only exists when committed individuals band together to do something truly serving a larger community. We had a fantastic time, and look forward to the opportunity to partner again!

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

West Park Cultural Center has provided excellent musical services for learners at The School of The Future. I had a pleasure collaborating with members of their organization.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Quite well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Incredible number of participants--what a huge endeavor. Gives opportunities for so many people of all ages to perform. Very enjoyable day.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 4 stars  

It was amazing, and I know many people in the event enjoyed it.  The young people in our group enjoyed themselves, and the mission of the event: engaging youth with high quality experiences of art was fully fulfilled , our team very appreciated this
unique opportunity you provided to us.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Bring more culture are activities to the event

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Some

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I am so impressed with how many programs West Park Cultural Center offers and how many people whose needs they meet on such a slim budget. WPCC is an organization with after school and summer camp programs for children, a performing arts program that brings literature to life for high school students, an adult literacy program, a program that teaches English comprehension for students trying to enter into Philadelphia Community College but who cannot pass the English comprehension exams, and a stunningly beautiful day of arts and culture for the whole community. Their programs reach and touch the lives of 2,000 or more people a year, and all on a budget that is less than the administrative budgets for organizations that reach far fewer people -- less than $100,000 a year. But not only is WPCC able to provide so many different programs, they are also able to demonstrate positive results -- students in their programs have met AYP (Advanced Yearly Progress) while their classmates do not, young adults are able to pass college admission exams and enroll in school, and children are now more engaged in school with improved grades. It is a safe place for donors to give their money!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Professionally, I would help Wesst Park Cultural Center share their story with a wider audience, and help them market themselves to new donors. I trust and know they could do more with a little support, so I can imagine how much more they would be able to do if they have a greater level of support from increased donor revenue.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

West Park Cultural Center is a great organization that helps children, youth, adults and families with access to arts & literacy through many different programs. They are truly helping change lives for children and youth in an economically devastated community, and giving opportunities for youth and adults to stay in school or return to school. What I like most about West Park Cultural Center is how they are able to provide so many programs on such a small budget. They're programs include an after school arts program, a summer camp for children, literacy programs for high school students, an adult literacy and college readiness program, and their signature event each year is the Arts Fest attended by more than 1,500 people. And they do all of this with volunteers, a dedicated staff, and a budget that is less than the full-time salary of many nonprofit CEOs. I know that when I give to them that my dollars are going a long ways.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

They just need to do a better job of letting people know they're there, and in getting in touch with more donors, so that they can expand their programs and help meet the needs of more children, youth and adults.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of advisors?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I've been working with WPCC for the past 7 years, designing their graphics and promotional materials. I love these people, they're the most dedicated bunch of educators, community members and activists I've ever met.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make their posters less crowded. :)

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful?