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Changing Worlds

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Civil Rights, Cultural & Ethnic Awareness, Education, Educational Services, Intergroup & Race Relations, Race

Mission: Changing Worlds’ mission is to foster inclusive communities through oral history, writing and art programs that improve student learning, affirm identity and enhance cross-cultural understanding.

Results: http://changingworlds.org/what-the-results-show-165.html

Target demographics: grades K-12, teachers, and community members

Programs: After-school program: arts & cultural connections program (acc)changing worlds partner community organizations and schools with teaching artists to explore culture through dance, drama or visual art during after-school hours. Its integrated approach provides students with rich exposure to one or more cultures while developing valuable artistic skills. Residency options include drawing and painting, digital photography, murals, drama, african dance, samba, bomba, hip hop and much more. The acc program is available for 1st-12th grade students and is customized to meet the cultural and artistic interests of the school.

in-school program: arts, cultural & literacy connections program (acl)changing worlds partner schools with teaching artists and literacy specialists in the classroom and pairs art-making and writing to explore "big ideas" that enhance students' learning in the arts and other academic content areas. The acl program is offered to 3rd-8th grade students and is designed to meet the academic, cultural and artistic interests of the school.

community outreach initiativeschanging worlds traveling exhibit follows the journeys of chicago immigrant and refugee families through their stories of change, cultural traditions and dreams for the future. Family nights enable families to discover unexpected connections through the celebration of family history, culture and heritage. Incorporating writing and story-telling experiences, each family will create a project that is meaningful to them.

Community Stories

8 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Changing Worlds is a unique and wonderful non-profit organization! Not only does it show through the hard work and dedication of their staff, but of all the teachers and volunteers involved in the programs. Everyday you can see the difference their programs make in the schools of Chicago through cross-cultural arts education! The programs really broaden the horizons of the youth who get to experience the programs and also give them a new view on their history, other cultures and family backgrounds.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

After hearing of the mission of Changing Worlds, I made it a point to learn more about the organization and realized that their mission was closely aligned with that of my University (Roosevelt University) and my own personal beliefs. I met with the Executive Director to discuss the possibility of becoming involved and am now a board member. At a time when Chicago is seeing more diversity in its schools and its communities but less tolerance and understanding of these diverse cultures, Changing Worlds is taking the lead as an organization that is trying to address this problem. Changing Worlds effectively uses the Arts and Oral Histories to help students and community members understand not only their own culture and roots but the culture of others. They highlight not the differences but the similarities that we all share. With knowledge comes an acceptance of "different" and a curiosity that brings people together. Most importantly, Changing Worlds not only provides these services but this dedicated group of professionals also train teachers to continue this work when they are gone. This is a wonderful organization and I am proud and honored to serve on its board.

1

Former staff

Rating: 5

I had an opportunity to work closely with CW and participated in some of the school projects they initiated with teachers. The integration of art into the literacy experience was so powerful. And the culminating events that included families were always very touching--seeing people who could very well have felt marginalized in the public school system were instead having their stories and their heritage celebrated. Every one of us was richer for the experience--the students in how they broadened their understanding of others, how they re-presented their experiences through art, and how they worked through a rigorous process for writing their family stories; the teachers in how they gained deeper insights to the students with whom they worked as well as some practices (such as integrating the arts) that enhanced the literacy experience; the families in their strengthened connections with the school community. I recently invited CW to come and speak to my graduate students, because I wanted them to learn about the many ways they might incorporate their students' heritage into literacy projects, and about the way one organization leads the way in doing this.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am so impressed by Changing Worlds. It is a professionally managed non-profit with a very dedicated set of volunteers, staff & board members. Their work really makes a difference in the schools and communities they operate

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I work for Changing Worlds as an art teacher. I love to work with them because they really support my work and are always ready to give me any tools to be a better professional.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Entreprneurial, engaged with communities, thoughtful, effective and makes a real difference -- outcomes! Some of the words I use to describe Changing Worlds and the true difference the organization makes.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have worked with Changing Worlds for two years and I am impressed with the organization's ambition to grow, its commitment to students, and its appreciation of the arts in schools and in the community. As a teaching artist, I feel supported by my colleagues and by the leaders in the organization.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have had the pleasure of working with the staff and management at Changing Worlds since 2006. It is by far one of the more exemplary mid-sized non-profits that I have seen in my many years as a consultant and manager. Changing Worlds has a winning oombination of progressive, very talented and committed staff and Board members that believe in its mission to connect cultures through the arts.