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Convening: Innovation High Schools

9/14/2018 |

The Barra Foundation’s Catalyst Fund supported four innovative high schools in Philadelphia – Big Picture Vaux, Building 21, Science Leadership Academy and the Workshop School. During the 2017-2018 year, ImpactED, in partnership with the Foundation, engaged in an intensive year of learning about these school models. There’s no single definition of what is meant by an “innovative” approach to education. Successful innovation requires iteration and work to cultivate an environment where both students and educators are encouraged to take necessary risks and learn from their failures. On Monday, June 18, 2018, education leaders gathered for a conversation about what it takes to implement and sustain innovative school models. The following are video presentations by the leaders of each school, describing their school’s values and learning model:

Innovating Intentionally

8/10/2017 |

Event Recap

Innovating Intentionally is a celebration of Barra’s grantees, a showcase of exciting innovations from our network and an opportunity for nonprofit leaders to connect across disciplines.

This year’s event was hosted on June 29th at the beautiful Barnes Foundation and featured several exciting innovations from our grantee network. Shelley Bernstein from the Barnes gave the keynote presentation. Shelley, who is Deputy Director for Digital Initiatives & Chief Experience Officer, described how the Barnes is using observation, pilot testing and evaluation to improve the visitor experience in a number of ways. She also shared some of the challenges and rewards related to recent projects as the organization shifts to visitor-centered thinking throughout its operation.

Tina Wahl, President of The Barra Foundation, reflected:

“A couple of weeks after the event, the leader of Habitat for Humanity Philadelphia, Corinne O’Connell, emailed us to ask for an introduction to Shelley at the Barnes. Corinne was excited to apply the museum’s ‘visitor-centered thinking’ to her work in housing and retail. Two weeks out and the presentation was still on her mind. To us, this is a strong signal that an event has been a success: this is exactly the kind of cross-sector inspiration that we aim to facilitate.”

Following the keynote, four grantee organizations presented Ignite-style presentations on projects that are leveraging technology to solve problems and seize opportunities in the fields of Arts & Culture, Education, Health and Human Services. Ignite presentations are fun and fast: “Rapid five-minute presentations, accompanied by 20 slides ticking down at 15-second intervals, inspire the crowd with ingenuity, humor and imagination—ideas that are a call to action, that turn the past upside down, that point the way by which you help make a better future.” As always, the program was followed by a networking reception to reconnect, introduce and thank colleagues from Barra’s network.

Event Photos & Videos

8/10/2017 |

Thank you to everyone who joined us for Innovating Intentionally at the Barnes Foundation. We hope you will enjoy these photos and videos from the event.

We are grateful to the nonprofit and foundation leaders who took time out from their busy schedules to learn from and reconnect with their colleagues. In particular, we are thankful to our presenters, who invested time, talent and creativity to share their innovation stories. Each eloquently demonstrated that it is indeed possible to address persistent problems with new ways of thinking.

  • Shelley Bernstein, The Barnes Foundation, Toward Visitor-Centered Thinking at the Barnes
  • Andrew Siegel & Dan Treglia, StreetChange
  • Aaliyah Green Ross, The Schuylkill Center, NaturePHL: Prescriptions for Play
  • Kelly McGlynn, MANNA, Food is Medicine
  • Tracy Buchanan, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, The TechniCulture Experiment
Event Videos & Photos

Visit Barra’s YouTube channel to watch their presentations and Flickr for photos of the event.

Videos: Innovating. Intentionally.

9/15/2015 |

In a series of Ignite-style presentations at an event on June 24, 2015 for grantees and others interested in innovation, Barra-funded change-makers Chip Linehan (Building 21), Cynthia Figueroa (Congreso de Latinos Unidos), Erin Bernard (History Truck),  Christine Simiriglia (Pathways to Housing PA) and Helen Eaton (Settlement Music School) provided updates on their work and talked about how they innovate with intentionality. Barra President Tina Wahl—also presenting Ignite-style—discussed how the work of these organization ties to Barra’s mission.

To learn more about the exciting work of these thought-leaders, view their presentation videos here:

  Chip Linehan            Cynthia Figueroa            Erin Bernard

Christine Simiriglia            Helen Eaton             Tina Wahl

Event Speakers Large

 

Technology for Good: Lunch with Kiva.org

12/12/2014 |

In town to celebrate the launch of Kiva Philadelphia, Premal Shah, President and Co-Founder of Kiva.org, joined Barra for an invigorating lunchtime conversation on “technology for good.” To showcase the range of talent in our region and to make new introductions across sectors, guests included investors, philanthropists, nonprofit executives, government leaders and entrepreneurs. Click here to read about Barra’s Kiva grant or here to view the Flickr album.
December 2014 Grantee: Kiva

We Imagine

7/8/2014 |

The Barra Foundation has a vision for Greater Philadelphia, inspired by leaders and dreamers like you.
Video by REMADE | July 2014

Steven Johnson: Where Good Ideas Come From 

7/7/2014 |

People often credit their ideas to individual “Eureka!” moments. But in his TED talk, Steven Johnson shows how history tells a different story.
TED, 2010

Barra Awardees Making Connections

7/3/2014 |

They’re two very different organizations, but it took Barra Awardees BalletX and University City District just an introductory conversation to see the partnership possibilities. Click here to see this Flickr album.
Photos by Mark Garvin, 
May 2014 Grantees: BalletX and University City District, 2013 Barra Awards

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