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Community Service




Americans have a high regard for fair play, mutual respect and cooperation. We pride ourselves on the fact that our democracy is founded on the idea of equal opportunity, on what we refer to as a level playing field. Our society—our national neighborhood—thrives when the greatest number of our citizens participate fully and actively.

How healthy is our neighborhood when one in seven Americans—and one in five of our children—lives in poverty? How should we help our neighbors who live in substandard housing, or have no homes at all? How do we bring into full participation in our society those who work long hours at jobs that do not pay a living wage?

The Just Neighbors Community Service Edition is a unique multimedia curriculum that will educate your organization about poverty, motivate them to greater service, and empower them to advocate on behalf of neighbors in need.

In Schools

From middle schools through graduate classes, Just Neighbors is successfully used to:

  • Motivate and educate students for community service
  • Educate, in classes for sociology, education, urban studies, economics
  • Put the 'learning' in service learning...and help students analyze and understand the causes of the poverty they see
  • Put a human face on students' understanding of economic justice
  • Maximize community outreach, and professional development for homeless liaisons

Varied media for all students and learning styles: Simulations...videos...role-plays...large-group and small-group discussions

For Nonprofits

Non-profits of all sizes and missions are using Just Neighbors to

  • Recruit and motivate volunteers
  • Train staff and volunteers
  • Stimulate commitment of the Board of Directors
  • Expand awareness of the organization and its mission in the community
  • Increase empathy for low-income neighbors and reduce judgments
  • Raise funds

What People are Saying

Family Promise's poverty education curriculum, Just Neighbors, is superb. If all Americans watched the powerfully beautiful videos of these unseen working poor and spent the small amount of time needed to participate in the discussions and exercises in Just Neighbors, the country would experience an uprising of devotion to making the American Dream a reality. Through intensive conversation and role-playing, this multimedia teaching program requires you to make the hard choices between rent and food, between second jobs and hours with your children, which are constantly forced on hard-working families. Beware: You will be gripped by sorrow and anger--and hopefully a burning determination to make changes. — David Shipler, bestselling author of The Working Poor

"I am deeply impressed by Just Neighbors,” Family Promise's interactive poverty education curriculum, which also serves to advance advocacy for the poor. The tone of the Just Neighbors' literature is respectful rather than condescending; its content reflects a thoroughgoing understanding of the factors that propel people into poverty and then make it so difficult for them to climb back out again. I'm particularly inspired by Just Neighbor's call for us all to become advocates for the economically downtrodden. I look forward to working with Family Promise to support their critical work in whatever way I can! - Barbara Ehrenreich, Author, Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America


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