Will Coley Joins The Opportunity Agenda, Leads New Work on Anti-Poverty

Many Americans consider poverty to be a significant national problem, even if it is rarely discussed in the current campaign season. A consistent majority of Americans feel that government has a role to play in reducing poverty, and support several high-profile policy solutions. Yet stereotypes and a lack of information about causes and solutions stand in the way of greater support for change. The task is to tell a new story, rooted in shared values, that informs, persuades, and activates key audiences. The Opportunity Agenda has been working on this for many years.

Partner News: Dreaming of a Nation Without Poverty

Further expanding our work on Poverty, we welcomed Will Coley to our Opportunity Agenda team in July. Will is developing a Communications Hub to amplify the voices of organizational partners and the larger social justice field. It’s a new project that’s launching as part of the organization’s economic opportunity initiative. We want to increase the quantity, quality, and coherence of the field’s communication while moving priority audiences. We’ve already engaged with partners taking huge steps to eradicate poverty. Learn about their work and what our Creative Changers are up to in this month’s Partner News.

Check out the amazing work of our 2016 Creative Change Alumni!

Our 2016 Creative Change Retreat just finished up in Utah last week and we are happy to share many highlights from some of this year's retreat participants!

Partner News: 2016 Communications Institute Fellows Already Making Ripples in the Media

Our 2016 Communications Institute Fellows are already shining a light on criminal justice and immigration issues by talking to the media and writing compelling op-eds. They join the 2015 Fellows in a shared effort to change how our nation talks about immigration and criminal justice issues. Janaé Bonsu, who just completed the Communications Institute two weeks ago, wrote an op-ed critiquing inequitable stop and search practices in black and brown communities. 2015 Fellows Soffiyah Elijah and Ricardo Favela contributed to stories highlighting problems in America’s criminal justice system.

The Moral Failure of the Ryan Budget

In this election year, our country is facing many choices about leaders and approaches to governing that will have a profound effect on future policies. In an era of increasingly partisan politics, routine measures like developing the annual federal budget have become highly politicized. Ultimately, governmental budgets are moral documents that reflect the values, priorities, ethics, and sense of justice of those who formulate them.

From Hollywood Headlines to Economic Policy

As it becomes plain that stories influence laws and policies, advocates are increasingly setting their sights on how these stories are created and reinforced in order to dismantle and shift them—and working with organizations like The Opportunity Agenda to do so collectively!

Partner News: National Recognition for our Fellows and the Creative Change Network

Add a Peabody and a Knight Cities Challenge Award to the ever-growing list of honors received by members of the Creative Change network!

A New Play’s Timely Commentary on American Values

"the idea is to write it so that people hear it and it slides through the brain and goes straight to the heart.”

– Maya Angelou

Art’s great power is to transform what’s possible by making us see and feel the world in new ways.

Partner News: Social Justice Blockbusters

If you're looking for a summer movie that's better than your average popcorn flick, our Creative Change alumni have you covered. Negin Farsad's (CC '11 and '12) 3rd Street Blackout is a comedy and love story about Hurricane Sandy and the ensuing blackout, starring John Hodgman, Janeane Garofalo, and Ed Weeks. Shalini Kantayya's (CC '11) Catching the Sun tells the story of the global clean energy future through the eyes of the people most diectly affected.

Looking Back, Looking Forward, and Seeing Hope

On April 18, more than 200 friends of The Opportunity Agenda came together at the Creative Change Awards to reconnect, laugh, reflect, learn, celebrate, conspire, and get down.

They walked away with new ideas and a renewed sense of possibility (and with their very own racism decoder rings and copies of Greg Jobin-Leeds and AgitArte’s incredible new book, When We Fight We Win). The event marked a decade of accomplishments for The Opportunity Agenda, and provided a window into the organization’s vision for the next 10 years.

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