New City Kids


240 Fairmount Avenue
Jersey City, NJ 07306
County: Hudson


Ms. Kate Nordling

Grant Amount


Program Area



Grant Details

For support of the Music School and Teen Life leadership program for Jersey City

Organization Background

The mission of New City Kids is: "Loving kids for change to create a community of academic, leadership, musical, and spiritual development."

New City Kids offers several key programs: the After School Center for Academic Excellence and the Performing Arts, the Teen Life Internship Program, Summer Camp, and other seasonal experiential programming. These programs support and complement one another.

The After School Center serves 150 children at 2 Jersey City sites. The Center is open to 1-8th grade students from 3-6 p.m., Monday through Friday, during the Jersey City Public Schools' school year. The After School Center strives for excellence in 3 areas: providing outstanding education in the performing arts, giving strong academic support, and making the program available to low-income families. Participants take performing arts classes based on interest during After School Center hours, and progress into more advanced classes as they master new skills.

The Teen Life Internship program works in collaboration with the After School Center to provide at-risk high school students with musical instruction, leadership development opportunities, college preparation support, academic assistance, and life and job skills training. For the 2014-15 program year, 70 Teen Life Interns are employed in the After School Centers as tutors and music class teachers for the children. All teen performing arts teachers have been trained by a master teacher, and are observed and given feedback by the same adult. Each summer before the school year begins, New City Kids holds a 2-week music "boot camp" for all teen performing arts teachers to prepare them for the year of teaching ahead. During this music camp, master teachers introduce new music and teach seminars on technique, cementing new knowledge through group practice sessions. Additionally, teen performing arts teachers participate in a music retreat during the year: a 3-day intensive experience of learning and creating music as a community.

Key personnel for these programs include: Josh Dornbos, MSW, Executive Director; Deborah Lemmen, LSW, Program Director; Shantia Smith, Fairmount Avenue After School Center Director; Jackie Thompson, Vroom Street After School Center Director; Jennifer Smith, Music Director; Daymiris Gell, Teen Life Internship Director.

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