LOVE West Park Cultural Center! They have adapted beautifully to the pandemic circumstances, keeping the safety of the children, their families, as well as staff and volunteers as the foremost concern. They encourage and lift up their program participants, with one participant even going on to become a teacher of one of the most popular WPCC courses Video Game Coding. Every participant I've talked about West Park Cultural Center with has been so exceptionally enthusiastic about their experience, and alumni recall their WPCC time so fondly! This is a hidden gem of a nonprofit.
Over the past year or so I have heard such great things about WPCC and it's programs. Once I checked them out I knew that I wanted to play a bigger role in what WPCC offers the community that I live in and serve. Now as I serve on the board and have seen how the organization has pivoted to accomodate for the restrictions that he pandemic has placed on us, it makes me proud that I made the decision to join West Park Cultural Center. I see great things in our future and the future of those we serve.
I watched the online concert for this non-profit a month ago and I was so impressed with all they had to offer to our youth. dance, computers, art, photography, ceramics and you can tell that the staff really cares for these kids and the neighborhood as well, and just want to see them grow. Ive been to the west park arts fest but never knew west park cultural center had so much going on, even during COVID, they are doing online classes. They didnt miss a beat. anything for our children and community. thank you
I have been working with West Park Cultural for over a decade. I really love the organization, the staff and the programming and I’m happy to be a part of the family. The Arts are an important part of a child’s education and life. Im thankful for West Park Cultural and what they offer to our community. Especially our youth.
I have been working with the West Park Cultural Center for over 8 years and I am PROUD to be a part of the family. I really enjoy the team at WPCC and all of the amazing programs they offer to our youth to expose them to arts and culture!
I dedicate my time and skills because this is an organization that truly cares about our kids. They do a great job of exposing our community youth to not only arts but different cultures as well. WPCC is family.
West Park Cultural center is a well kept secret. My grandchildren has benefit from attending Camp Gingko, after school programs and dance logic. Their staff is awesome and Ms. Betty is five stars. All of their programs are planned and geared to develop the children to become independent thinkers while exploring their creative talents. Thank you!!
My goddaughters attend an unusual program at West Park in dance and coding. Very forward thinking content; dedicated staff.
West Park Cultural Center provides unique opportunities that are accessible to various communities of youth. They create safe & brave spaces that foster creativity, confidence, and allow young folks to step into their lights as artists in the world. Thanks WPCC!
The Dance logic program is amazing!! The continued involvement (virtually) during this pandemic is great!!
I had a great experience with this year's event. I believe the logistics changes had a big impact on the flow of traffic to and from all the activities,
From the placement of the stage and the food trucks,everyone had to pass
Through all the vendors which hightened visibility and sales.The choice of performers were an excellent draw,The crowd seemed up.
This organization is a hidden gem in Philly. I attended their West Park Arts Fest this past summer and had a great time. They had a festival that was free to get into, family friendly entertainment, not too adult, not too kiddish, but just right and I got to see a concert for FREE. They had activities for adults and children all day long, which was also free. The staff and everyone who had on a red shirt was very helpful, pleasant and greeted you with a smile. There was no drama and I really enjoyed myself. Nothing like being able to hang in the park and have a great time. I don't know how they do such a great event for free each year but the community appreciates it
I have enjoyed volunteering for the West Arts Fest for two years. The festival is diverse with entertainment, vendors displaying multiple talents and goods for sale, and great food vendors with dietary options. One thing that stands out is the festival is very family oriented. It is a great, fun filled, cultural day out. I am looking forward to participating as a volunteer.
I participated in the West Park Arts Fest as a vendor and the level of commitment to delivering a first rate experience for everyone involved is unmatched. The staff was friendly, organized, willing to help me in any way, and cared deeply about my vendor experience. As far as the festival itself, it was entertaining, diverse, well-rounded and just an enjoyable experience for all ages. I love this organization and I can’t wait to be involved next year!
The West Park Cultural Center is an amazing and beneficial part of the Philadelphia community. I worked as a volunteer for the West Park Arts Fest for the past two years and was able to participate in the wonderful events of the day. It was both an educational and entertaining.
Wonderful organization. Sponsoring community events, and innovative, nationally recognized programs that are paving the way for young people in West Park and throughout Philadelphia.
West Park Cultural Center has great exceeded my expectations for my children. They were exposed to local artist and were lovingly taught lessons to inspire them. The summer camp program was amazing and they can't wait to join West Parks Cultural Center's camp for next year.
This was my daughters first year attending West Park Cultural Center. She absolutely loved it! They provided her the ability to express her creativity through various artistic outlets. As a first time parent I was nervous about my child being with unfamiliar individuals. The staff here are amazing and truly care about your children. West Park Cultural Center is a great asset to the Community!
West Park Cultural Center changed my life for the better. I always enjoyed art and this program helped me strengthen my artistic abilities. In addition to that, West Park Cultural Center has taught (and continues to teach) me important life skills/lessons. Also the connections you make there will impact your life positively.
My daughter Lauryn Dorsett has been with the West Park Cultural Ctr. for 3 years & she absolutely LOVES it. She started with dance logic / coding. She has learned so much from both & the volunteers truly give their all to the kids. They are supportive, patient & kind. They don't just teach them, but instill in them the importance of higher education & social skills. This year she joined camp Ginkgo. She was so excited. It was another great opportunity. She learned new skills that will prepare her for her 1st job in the near future & it was something fun for her to do rather than be home all summer because there aren't many places to send teenagers during summer break.
Thank you so much for all of the opportunities offered to my daughter & all children. This is truly a GREAT organization.
Robin Dorsett / Mom
I have been working at West Park Cultural Center for the last several months. They are a wonderful organization with critical educational programming.
I love the West Park Cultural Center and dance logic program. I've learned so much about coding and how dance is related to that. My instructors are great and really care about us. If we need extra help they are there and they really make class fun. I am learning so much.
I am on the Board of the West Park Cultural Center and have been engaged in the community since 2008. WPCC provides wonderful resources for children and families that may never get opportunities to participate in arts- based programs as there are often financial barriers. It's amazing to see all of the wonderful program offerings.
great opportunities for children of all ages and families. i look forward to working with the organization in various capacities.
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Working with danceLogic has been a great experience.
The combination of dance and programming was an excellent idea.
The West Park Cultural Center is an excellent and beloved arts institution in the Parkside neighborhood. They offer a great range of programs and are deeply rooted in the community. We are honored to partner with them on a number of initiatives, including the annual West Park Arts Fest. They are a resource and a haven for local children and a great voice for positive neighborhood change.
West Park Cultural Center is a great neighborhood-based organization, providing critical access to the arts through a range of programs and a fantastic annual arts festival that is both a local and regional draw.
West Park Cultural Center continues to be an exemplary visual arts non profit. I was fortunate to attend my second Annual Arts Fest and the inspiration provided by all the community performances was great. Some students were even gifted with technology to further assist them! Having art lessons available as an outlet continues to be necessary and the fact this program strives to make this affordable and accessible is beyond great! In addition to observing the ceramics program i have also observed a dance (performance) arts program, summer camp activities and coding course!
This conceptual and in practice non profit is a gem in the West Park community and beyond. I have witnessed firsthand, how exposure to music and the ceramic art forms has positively transformed the youth who participated in this program. Their exposure has taught them not only a new craft, but prepared them as advocates and prepped them for leadership roles in which they have spoken on behalf of the program.
I am proud to represent an organization that uses the arts as a wider world teaching tool. West Park Cultural Center utilizes almost every dollar raised to provide quality after school and summer programming for children and arts and literacy programs for adults.
West Park Cultural Center is a great asset in our community. Its an example of community pride and empowerment!
I recently joined the West Park Cultural Center staff and could not be happier with my decision. I started teaching the after school ceramic program at the Microsoft School of the Future and it would not be possible without the support of the staff I get from WPCC.
WPCC provides invaluable arts education and services for youth and adults in Philadelphia. I have worked at the summer camp, Camp Gingko, for three years, and have seen students blossom and find confidence in their creative voice thanks to these programs. West Park Cultural Center is an organization that not only community oriented, but also has strong relationships to individuals and families of those communities.
WPCC and Camp Gingko are excellent programs that foster creativity, expression and growth. I have had the pleasure and honor to work as a teaching artist at Camp Gingko this past summer, and I have seen firsthand the impact it has had on the community at hand. It is no surprise that the campers keep on coming back year after year. It is crucial to have organizations and programs such as Camp Gingko, and for nonprofits such as this one to be able to continue doing the excellent work they have already started .
I have watched with great pride the work of West Park Cultural Center in my community. The organization provides children excellent arts programming at low and no cost if a family is unable to pay their very modest fees. I have also enjoyed their West Park Arts Fest that happens every year and appreciate the cultural diversity it offers.
The West Parker Cultural Center has served the children in and out of our community for many years. West Park currently has a professional ceramic instructor who teaches the children how to create beautiful art at the after school program which takes place at the School of the Future. During Summer months The West Park Cultural Center holds a camp that has given many children an opportunity to travel to New York to see beautiful plays, enjoy amusement Parks and more.West Park Cultural also provides scholarships for children who's families could not afford for them to attend summer camp.
The students from the ACE program at Martha Washington enjoys CERAMICS that WPCC offers every Tuesdays and Thursdays.
West Park Cultural Center uses arts and culture as a central tool in programs that help youth tap their creative and academic potential. And as a steward of the organization, and past participant in their programs, I know that each and every contributed dollar is spent directly on the mission and delivering programs that make impact on West Philadelphia.
The West Park Cultural Center is an amazing organization that exposes the youth to the arts, a variety of arts for low-cost, sometimes even free. With so many programs that benefit art being cut, it's great to know an organization like this thrives within my neighborhood. Every staff member is great, no matter how much or how little you interact with them, they are welcoming and put art first!
A wonderful organization that truly goes all out for their community. We work really hard to raise the funds for our free annual Arts Fest that is growing larger every year. In addition, we have created new partnerships to expand the services and experiences of the community we serve.
West Park provides the best educational and arts program ever. The best part is that it is all free! As a former teacher, I can't tell you how wonderful it was to have help during school time and after school time. What ever I needed appeared magically. As a former WEPIC teacher from Turner Middle School, I know the difference between an organization whose main purpose is to help children and teachers achieve their goals, and not use them to benefit their college or university. For example, why have kids learn about dental hygiene, bring in students from a dental school, identify cavities in their mouths but not fix them? Service was uneven and benefited the dental students and university to secure grants. Without community by in and involvement they just fade away.
However, West Park is different. They are the community and are committed to making a difference in the lives of the children from their community. This is why it is successful and a sustainable force of energy within the school and surrounding community.
I met the director of West Park at the School of the Future. Their program was outstanding. I did not have to find them, they found me. They were instrumental in providing artists in residence volunteers for many service learning projects I designed. For example, when my students were working on the Presidents House project in Philadelphia, they provided not only the resources I needed, but made the arrangements to bring them right into my classroom. My docents who were training for the Belmont Mansion, worked with two artists and created a wall mural about Eden Cemetery, the first private black cemetery in the nation. It suffers from vandalism and the students worked on eliminating this problem by creating videos, art and educational web quests to educate and share with students who live near Eden.
I cannot explain how my students felt to meet one of the last Buffalo soldiers from WWII AND a film producer all the way from Italy who created a film about these heroic men. This is the kind of educational experiences West Park provides. It was also a back door way of exposing my students to opera, because an opera about these men is being created.
They exposed students to plays, music and had the. Involved in making the West Park festival, a yearly event grow to include all of the other historic homes and museums within its boundaries. They know how to build consensus and this quality is essential to their continued success. My five years of receiving and giving back to this non-profit. Has been quite a ride.
I recently began working for West Park Cultural Center as a ceramic instructor and a program like this is necessary for the Philadelphia community. I feel so privileged to work with talented, caring and respectful students and parents everyday. Coming to work feels like a second home and family. I look forward to my job each day. I am also thankful to work with a great and supportive staff as well!
The West Park Cultural Center is an organization that I am truly pleased to have worked with. It is one of the few organizations of this type that reaches children and families in the community where they live. It seems that all too often children in underserved communities are often left out. This is not the case with West Park Community Center, here all children are served. Keep up the good work!
West Park Cultural Center has provided outstanding arts and education programs for children and youth for 14 years with amazing results. I am proud to have this organization in West Philadelphia.
West Park offers the under served youth of our city a wonderful opportunity that would otherwise less likely be afforded to them, and for that and the due diligence to service youth and family in the community i nominate West Park Cultural Center a 5 star Great Non Profit
Everytime i work with West Park Cultural, it is a wonderful and pray experience for both myself and those of whom we serve. Recently having the pleasure of coordinating the summer camp Camp Ginkgo i can truly say that West Park's dedication to culture and raise positive and productive youth from Philadelphia is unmatched and flat out admirable. I want to be attached to such greatness for as long as it's possible...ten thumbs up from me!
By chance, we happened to stumble across the West Park Cultural Center. We were hesitant to enroll because the program was located about an hour and a half away from home. We took a leap of faith and enrolled in the after-school ceramics class and LOVED it. On the very first day, Janice gave my daughters the gift of loving ceramics. Ron and Betty are incredibly encouraging and supportive of all the students. As a parent, I was excited to participate in an environment that fostered positive role-modeling, encouragement, and creative fun. I wish this organization would grow and start another branch in the NE section of Philadelphia.
The WPAC is a true gem. The summer program is a great component that is affordable. The experiences had by the students will last a life time. They are being exposed to the beauty of nature and art techniques that will inspire them in other areas of their development.
The West Park Cultural Center is an organization that I am truly pleased to be involved with. It is an organization that reaches children and families in the community where they live. West Park seeks to expose their clients to the wonders of the arts, education and cultural enrichment. For a small program they have a large impact on the community and its children. The West Park Cultural center runs after school programs, senior programs, children summer camps and they host a large summer festival every year in the community called the West Park Arts Fest. This is a good program to get your children involved in.
West Park Cultural Center truly works with the West Park community in all aspects from the very young to the young at heart. Conducting several projects annually, WPCC fills many of the blanks left in education, arts, humanities by other entities.
The West Park Cultural Center is an awesome organization and provides services for my community in the arts and culture. My favorite is the summer camp. This past summer they created a still motion video that was awesome. The children learned and participated in the making of the video. This organization exposes children to the arts with hands on experience. With the west park arts fest they get to learn about different cultures and see the live performances.
This unbelievably affordable program, from caring staff members Betty, Donna, Janice & Dominick, has been extremely vital in my daughter's lives. Their Ceramics classes, led by the relentlessly creative Ms. Janice, has become necessary for my children throughout the school year. I can't stop recommending this program & the summer camp to family, friends, co-workers, fellow school parents & passerby erst who are in search of creative outlets for their children. These folks are continuously committed to sparking our children's imagination through art & music exploration. We adore & thank them!!! Peace
West Park Cultural Center is a wonderful camp for inner city kids. As a mother and teacher in this day and age I think there is nothing better than having your children outside in nature all day playing, using their imagination and learning under the sky. This is a wonderful Art camp set outdoors surrounded by woods and gardens. Campers explore many art concepts and natural materials. A perfect place for children to be children learning through play. Campers also get to escape the cities long humid summers swimming in an Olympic size pool several days a week if their not exploring Philadelphia's many museums and cultural attractions.
I volunteer for the Adult Basic Education class and it truly is an exceptional and amazing course. The head teacher also not only knows her material extremely well, but she provides an accepting, non-judgmental, educational, open environment for students of all ages. This class is like one big family who supports and learns from each other every week. West Park Cultural Center provides assistance and support for each of the adult students AND volunteers. They are always very welcoming, thankful, and truly appreciative for my volunteer services and for their students. The West Park Cultural Center is made up of individuals who really care for the community and go way beyond to help as many people as they can.
I volunteer from time to time with Dr. Pat helping out with the adult basic education class. This center provides not only a place for older individuals to socialize but also a plethora of opportunities for them to continue to grow and develop through their later years. Furthermore, this center accepts not only older individuals but also supports those younger folks who are willing to learn and better themselves. Overall, a great place to volunteer and grow!
West Park puts on a really nice festival for the community, and runs a great after school program for youth.
This is the best organization I have ever served on. They create miracles.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
Incredible number of participants--what a huge endeavor. Gives opportunities for so many people of all ages to perform. Very enjoyable day.
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.
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!
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.
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.
I recently worked with the West Park Cultural Center, teaching visual arts in their Ginkgo Academy Summer Program. The level of commitment and dedication I witnessed there was truly inspiring. From the director to the volunteers from the community, there were so many passionate adults concerned with helping these young artists. I've never experienced such a unique program--set in beautiful Fairmount Park, it was a delight to see the children learn and grow from the surrounding nature. Leading the kids in art projects, working with my fellow instructors and camp directors, I felt that each day was a step towards success in the development of every child. I think about those friends all the time, and know that they had a truly memorable and impactful summer at Ginkgo Academy.