Hilltop Artists, transforming lives through glass art

Organization Name
Hilltop Artists
Mission Statement

Using glass art to connect young people from diverse cultural and economic backgrounds to better futures

City & State
Question 1
The Before: What was the challenge, issue or problem your organization was facing? Or, what was the opportunity you were not able to take advantage of before you put a technology solution in place?

Answer: The Hilltop area of Tacoma was well known for its crime and gang activity. There was a high incidence of poverty, neglect, homelessness, substance abuse and violence among our students. Our humble beginnings 16 years ago included driving around the Hilltop area and recruiting gang members off the streets. As we have grown our technological infrastructure we are able to network and reach out the students through SO many new avenues, including the judicial system, truancy reduction programs and gang prevention programs to name just a few. Our website and email campaigns have given us much more visibility in the community and enabled us to really work on our fundraising. We are a tuition-free program and provide all staff, supplies and materials.

Question 2
What Microsoft software have you used/are you using in your organization to more effectively engage your beneficiaries, donors and/or volunteers and/or to make a difference in your community?

Answer: Microsoft Office 2007 or 2010 (Includes any of the following: Access, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, OneNote, Outlook, and Word)

Question 3
The After: How have these Microsoft products allowed you to engage your stakeholders more efficiently or effectively to make a difference in your community?

Answer: By incorporating Microsoft Access to track all of our donors, glass sales and contacts, we are able to keep our friends and funders up to date with all of our work. With office programs we write grants, send email campaigns and have an up-to-date website. In addition to keeping up with our funders, we have been able to network with community organizations so that we can provide wraparound services to our students and their families. Despite the economic challenges we are strong and growing, with new programs added this year to address court involved young women through our Arts Connect program, and a community garden project at our middle school.

Question 4
What about these products (the features or the way you used them) made them particularly helpful in enabling your organization to expand and improve upon its community impact?

Answer: By using Microsoft Access we now have a complete database of all of our contacts, from donors to parents to community organizations. We know how to reach the folks we rely on to keep us strong, and solicit their help and support. Our newsletters ensure that the community is aware of all that we are doing, and the website gives us a portal to the world. Our internal communications are strong, and I cannot imagine how we would function without this connectivity! We also use Microsoft office with our students to write resumes and artist bios, which have enabled our students to find employment and exhibit at local galleries. We utilize technology in every facet of our programs, from curriculum to slideshows and presentations, to grant writing and our evaluation processes.

Question 5
Please provide any examples, stories or data that illustrate the difference the use of Microsoft software has enabled you to make (i.e., # of new clients reached, new program added, increased dollars raised, increased volunteers, etc.

Answer: This year alone we have added our Arts Connect Program for court involved young women and are in the process of initiating a community garden project at the middle school where one of our glassblowing hot shop resides. Without our ability to attract and keep new donors and funders through our database and increasing our communications we would not have been able to raise the funds necessary to not only maintain our existing programs, but to add these new and important programs. We are now able to serve over 550 students a year! We have also increased our volunteer base and which allows us to function with existing revenue. We have also created powerful videos and printed materials with Microsoft Software.

Upload photos or other supporting works/files

Supporting Work Web URL
Special directions needed to access your work

http://www.youtube.com/user/hilltopartists253 See us on Youtube (We are very proud of this video!)

Upload org logo or other identifying graphic

Hilltop Artists Logo