About The Village of Arts and Humanities
An Arts and Cultural Hub in North Philadelphia
The Village of Arts and Humanities supports the voices and aspirations of the North Philadelphia community by providing opportunities for self-expression rooted in art and culture. Located in North Philadelphia and founded in the 1980’s, the nonprofit inspires individuals to be agents of positive change through programs that engage youth, revitalize community, preserve heritage, and encourage environmental stewardship.
Their mission is to, “amplify the voices and aspirations of our North Philadelphia community by providing arts-based opportunities for self-expression and personal success that engage youth and their families, revitalize physical space, and preserve black heritage.”
The Village is the largest provider of free arts, cultural, environmental, and social programs in North Philadelphia. Their Village Youth program offers free arts education classes taught by top artists to youth ages 9-19 and they also offer PhillyEarth, a program focused on teaching youth about urban farming and environmental education. Other programs that The Village runs includes the People’s Paper Co-op, “which seeks to transform the narrative of re-entry with, for and as neighbors to those most affected by the criminal justice system” and has served more than 2,000 citizens to date. Through their Creative Campus program, The Village has installed 15 art parks and gardens throughout North Philadelphia that brings the community together.
Community Collaboration for Solar
The Swarthmore College Solar Ambassadors continued their successful partnership with RE-volv, Serenity Soular, and Solar States, a local solar installer, to bring solar power to The Village of Arts and Humanities! The Village of Arts and Humanities was the second nonprofit that this partnership brought solar to, the first being Serenity House.
Serenity Soular helped lead the partnership to bring solar to The Village of Arts and Humanities. Serenity Soular is a collaboration between members of the North Philadelphia community and RE-volv Solar Ambassador students and faculty from Swarthmore College. Serenity Soular brings a diverse group of people and institutions together around the common goal of supporting a thriving and sustainable community in North Philadelphia. To date, Serenity Soular has supported four local apprentices to job-shadow solar installations, including two apprentices for the RE-volv solar project at Serenity House, which launched these apprentices into careers in the green economy.
Solar Ribbon Cutting Event at The Village of Arts and Humanities
Going Solar with RE-volv
The Village of Arts and Humanities went solar with RE-volv through an 11 kW system that will save The Village more than $20,500 on their electricity bills over the life of the solar system. The Village will be able to invest their solar savings back into their community-serving programs, allowing them to provide more art-based programs for the community they serve in North Philadelphia. This solar installation will cover approximately 75% of the building’s electricity load and will eliminate 528,000 pounds of emissions from entering the atmosphere.
Community Support for Solar at The Village of Arts and Humanities
This solar project was made possible by contributions from more than 300 generous donors from throughout the country who contributed to the crowdfunding campaign to pay for the upfront cost of bringing solar to The Village of Arts and Humanities. Additionally, we’d like to thank our partners at the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation for supporting The Village of Arts and Humanities' solar array.
As The Village of Arts and Humanities pays back RE-volv for the cost of the solar system, their solar lease payments will go into RE-volv’s Solar Seed Fund, a revolving fund used to bring solar to more nonprofits throughout the country.
View the crowdfunding video below that the Swarthmore College Solar Ambassadors and Serenity Soular put together for this crowdfunding campaign.