© 2018 Safe Kids Stories

Sat, Sep 22 | WHYY Public Media Commons


Using the power of youth voice and connection, we aim to bring 18-year-olds and other first time voters to the polls in 2018—beginning a process toward full participation in 2020—not just for a charismatic candidate, but to advocate for youth safety, agency, and inclusion.

Time & Location

Sep 22, 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM

WHYY Public Media Commons, 150 N 6th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106


About The Jawn

We’re planned the 9/22 Jawn, from 2-4pm, in the Hamilton Commons at WHYY, as a cross between a conference and a talk show to get real work done with energy. We gathered in small groups, from schools and other organizations, to meet one another in a common cause: to come up with the best ideas and strategies to bring new young voters to the polls this November. To do that, the groups came up with their own strategies during workshops—after being prepared for the task by experts in how to increase voter turnout. Here's how the afternoon unfolded: 


1:30 Doors Open

Registration, food, music, mingling. Check out the voting machine, courtesy of the City Commissioner; register to vote on site; talk to the Commissioner's staff about how to register others. Introverts can slide over to the Free Library's book bike for a moment away from the crowd.


2:00 Program Start

At the jawn, teams will enjoy a short program with three excellent guides—people who have experience in organizing, social media, and creative social connection with voters. These folks will share strategies and tactics they have employed or seen in action. We'll also be graced with music, a poem by the youth poet laureate, and a visit from the mayor.


2:35 Working Session

Then, with new or confirmed ideas, groups split off up and down the halls and classrooms of WHYY to come up with goals, and to make, amend, or elaborate plans that they think can get them there.


(During the working session, lots to do along with planning and checking out other teams, and snacking. WHYY's Media Lab will be set up to make videos where participants answer questions. And our experts will stick around for questions and consultation.)


3:30 Gather/Share/Commit

We'll return to Hamilton Commons to share some of those strategies, because, even though this is a competition, the real effectiveness comes not just in the ideas, but in the doing! We'll have one social media Do Now to start our momentum.


Music to finish, including the original Vote That Jawn song by two young North Philly rappers, reminds our teams that we will continue to post fresh content—and accept content from participants—for them to share. And we'll announce the prizes we'll award on November 6th—for the most first-time voters, the most creative tactics, and the most team grit! Cash prizes for individual teams, but, the way we see it, with each new voter who's registered, everybody wins!


Collect your Vote That Jawn hat and, for the team, a band poster. They are your gifts from us. You decide how you'll use them.


The Coming Weeks

We'll post content through the October 9th deadline, and ask teams to keep track of whom they've registered. Then, we'll post content through November 6th about voting—who's on the ballot, what they do, and how to find out what they've done before.


November 6th – 7th:

On the day of or the day after elections, we'll throw an afternoon, after school afterparty for the participants, at City Hall, where we'll let groups share their adventures. We'll announce the winners of the prizes and we'll celebrate how much young people themselves will have moved the needle here in Philadelphia!