Philadelphia, PA - April 5, 2023 - The Committee of Seventy, Philadelphia's oldest nonpartisan good government organization, today announced a new collaboration with Vote That Jawn, a UPenn initiative dedicated to increasing civic engagement among Philadelphia's young people. The partnership unifies two of Pennsylvania's leaders in civic participation and expands C70’s existing mission to connect in new ways with youth and first-time voters.
“Vote That Jawn is one of Philadelphia’s most creative social media movements,” said Lauren Cristella, C70’s Interim President and COO. “Because it is driven by young people and serves young people, their content empowers our City’s youth to play a big, important role in the future of our democracy. This partnership unites two of the city’s most important civic institutions to better serve the current and future voters of Philadelphia, allowing us to maximize our impact and ensure that Philadelphians have both the tools and inspiration to become lifelong super voters.”
The partnership will become official through two events sponsored by both organizations in the lead-up to the municipal primary elections next month. On April 11, C70 is co-sponsoring a City Council At-Large Candidate Convention at WHYY, where most of the 30+ at-large council candidates will meet with hundreds of voters in a reverse job fair-style event that allows voters to directly interact with council candidates.
Then, on April 16, C70 will host The Voter Hub at FDR Park, where citizens can register to vote, apply for a mail-in ballot, have their questions answered, and discover free, nonpartisan resources in several languages. Young people on hand for Vote That Jawn will cover the event and use it to continue their content for the rest of the election cycle.
Together, C70 and Vote That Jawn will continue to provide education and information that allows people to empower themselves and their communities; hold their officials accountable to the promises they make during campaigns; and demand more from their government.
“In 2018, after the Parkland, FL, shooting, and after my Creative Writing students wrote about their generation’s experience of gun violence on the one hand and activism on the other, they challenged me: create a course that would let student writers convince Philadelphia youth, high school and college, to vote,” said Vote that Jawn founder, Lorene Cary.
“It was homework with urgency. Vote That Jawn grew to encompass partners from PA Youth Vote to Fresh Artists to Youth Poet Laureates to the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. We focus on digital forms with a fresh youth voice to share over social media. So maybe it doesn’t make voting cool. But connected to other youth. So, cooler. Now, Vote That Jawn needs a whole new level of good-government expertise. In Philly, that means C70,” Cary said.
ABOUT Committee of Seventy
The Committee of Seventy is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that has promoted, supported, and facilitated government ethics and election integrity for more than a century. We believe that elections should be more free, more fair, more safe and more secure. We want every eligible voter to vote, to be informed when they vote, and to vote with confidence.
For more information, visit www.seventy.org
ABOUT Vote That Jawn
Using the power of youth voice and connection, #VoteThatJawn aims to bring 18-year-olds and other first-time voters to the polls—beginning a process toward full civic engagement—not just for a charismatic candidate, but to advocate for youth safety, agency, and inclusion.
For more information, visit www.votethatjawn.com