New Path Programs & Collaboratives

Who Wants to be a Candidate? Workshop Series

New Path's annual Who Wants To Be a Candidate? series includes a set of
informational forums for citizens who are interested in running for office. The forums
provide information on campaign development and management.

Coalition for a Better Memphis Voter's Guide

The CBM voter’s guide is designed to be a tool for coalition members and voters to provide information necessary to make an informed choice. Individuals and organizations can use this information as a resource for their own process and make decisions about what is important to them in supporting the candidate of their choice.

The CBM believes that voters should have as much information as possible about the candidates including general qualifications and an assessment of each candidate’s understanding of and commitment to key issues facing the City of Memphis to ensure that qualified candidates will be elected.

The CBM measures announced candidates against a previously established criteria and brings the results to the attention of  Coalition members and to Shelby County voters.  www.bettermemphis.org/cbm

Race Relations & Memphis Panel Series

In January 2008, New Path partnered with the Memphis Urban League to host a series of panel discussions on race relations in Memphis & Shelby County.  Their initial goal was to provide an opportunity for Mid-South residents who were interested in addressing this topic a venue to come together and discuss openly the various components that may contribute to maintaining a racial divide, particularly in the city of Memphis.

 

Realizing that many community members and leaders were also passionate and eager to work toward resolving this issue, the organizations recognized the need to confront the topic by initiating an open dialogue where participants felt comfortable and free to express their concerns, and to seek answers to questions they may have before been hesitant to present.

 New Path and the Memphis Urban League were hopeful that this dialogue would carry over to the larger Memphis community and foster improved race relations in the city and county.    

Change Memphis 

The objective of the Change Memphis campaign was to engage local citizens into the voting process with specific emphasis on ten proposed amendments whose potential outcomes, would impact the future direction of Memphis and Shelby County for years to come.

 

With immediate goals to increase declining levels of election participation and voter turnout, we developed and managed an extensive voter education campaign surrounding the proposed referenda, and soon recognized additional opportunities for citizen engagement.

A coalition was formed by members of New Path, the Mid-south Peace & Justice Center and Concerned Memphians United to run a city-wide voting project that would coincide with the 2008 Memphis municipal campaigns.

 

Our vision is to provide opportunities for individuals, community leaders and neighborhood organizations to work together and empower Memphis and Shelby County voters to realize the power they hold to effect positive change in their communities.  www.changememphis.net

Common Ground

Picture a room with about 10 ordinary residents sitting in a circle. There are men and women, blacks, whites, Asians, Native Americans, Hispanics and other ethnic groups. They represent different religions, backgrounds and generations.

This small group of diverse people has agreed  to meet for two hours each week for seven weeks with a trained facilitator who leads a discussion on race relations. In this sort of safe and open environment, it’s been proven that people will listen and freely share their thoughts, beliefs, and perceptions.

Through Common Ground, which had its inaugural class of 221 in the spring of 2008, another 200-plus participants in the fall of 2008, and another 200-plus participants ni the winter of 2009, participants are developing relationships across racial divides.  www.commongroundmemphis.org