Tuesday, December 19, 2017

It's That Time of Year Again!!!

This past Saturday, in collaboration with New Hope Baptist Church and the Newark YMCA, Newark Community Solutions held its 7th Annual Holiday Gift Drive Wrap Party.  Staff, volunteers and Newark Youth Court members spent the morning setting up the New Hope “toy store”, hanging decorations, organizing crafts and, of course, wrapping gifts.  The afternoon was a flurry of kids, families, candy cane reindeer, balloon animals and even a visit from Superman in a Santa hat! Over 150 kids received toys and gifts through this collaborative effort and NCS was thrilled to be a part of it.

Special thanks to Alycia Green from New Hope Baptist Church and all our amazing volunteers.

Happy Holidays from Newark Community Solutions!!!!

Monday, December 4, 2017

New TED Talk on Procedural Justice
A new TED Talk, How Judges Can Show Respect, details the promise and principles of procedural justice and how recognizing the humanity of every defendant can transform lives and the practice of justice. This video highlights Judge Victoria Pratt's work and experience at the Center for Court Innovation's Newark Community Solutions. Click here to watch. 

Friday, November 3, 2017


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Newark Youth Court staff and members, joined by Newark Community Solutions staff, held a community Halloween party at the NCS community office in Newark's South Ward.  Neighborhood kids in costume streamed in through the late afternoon and early evening to collect candy and work on spooktacular arts and crafts.  A few young people even picked up youth court applications for the next enrollment period!  
Thanks to Victim Services Coordinator Tonya Tucker and 
Youth Court Coordinator Jasmine Harden for organizing! 


Monday, October 16, 2017


Supporting Our New Jersey Veterans
Newark Community Solutions was proud to once again participant in the annual Stand Down of North Jersey providing support and services to homeless veterans including flu shots, HIV  testing, benefits assistance, employment programs, legal services, clothing donations and evens haircuts.  Newark Community Solutions staff and interns spoke with veterans in attendance about clearing up open municipal matters in Newark as well as other court based social services.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Center for Court Innovation 
Photo of the Week for 10/9/17

Ironbound Community Corporation’s LaQuan Thomas introduces one of the inhabitants of the Ironbound garden to Newark Community Solutions’ Lamar Mitchell. Lamar is the community service site supervisor for our Newark program, which provides alternative sentencing options for Newark Municipal Court. Once a week in summer and early fall, program participants can complete their community service mandates at the garden, picking fruits and vegetables for distribution to community members in need (participants go home with a bag of produce as well).

Monday, October 2, 2017

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Newark Community Solutions and the Newark Youth Court 
hosting 2nd Open Doors Art Exhibit
Reception: Friday, October 13th
Newark Municipal Courthouse, 31 Green Street, Newark, NJ 07102

Newark Community Solutions is hosting its second annual community justice themed art exhibit titled Visions of Community Justice on Friday, October 13th in the Newark Municipal Courthouse at 31 Green Street, Newark.  Part of the four day long Open Doors Citywide Arts Festival, the exhibit is one of dozens connected across the city.  For the second year in a row, NCS and the Newark Youth Court collaborated to create a “pop-up” art exhibition in the halls of the Newark Municipal Court. Community Justice works to engage community members to create and maintain healthy and safe neighborhoods by confronting, reducing and preventing crime while addressing its impact at the community level.  The exhibit is aligned with the values of the Newark Youth Court, a youth led program providing alternatives to traditional consequences, including community service and skill-building workshops, for school based and juvenile justice infractions.  Youth of the city of Newark have the opportunity to be diverted from traditional discipline, including suspensions, expulsions, truancy court or arrest, while gaining a connection to their peers and their community.

This past summer, Youth Court members and respondents worked with local artist Malik Whitaker to create art that’s reflective of their mission and how it resonates with participants and within the greater community.  Visions of Community Justice will highlight the artwork created by our Youth Court members and Youth Court respondents as well as local artists who answered an open call for submissions.  The Youth Court’s art (paintings, drawings, photographs and collages) will be the final product of an initiative funded by the Newark Arts Council’s ArtStart grant. 

Last year’s exhibit had a great turnout and inspired the creation of an Arts Committee which has worked to enhance the Newark Municipal Court space with art year-round. We look forward to seeing you at the exhibit!

WHEN: The evening of Friday, October 13th, from 6:00pm-8:00pm. 
WHERE: The lobby of the Newark Municipal Courthouse, 31 Green Street, Newark, NJ 07102

 the evening of Friday, October 13th, from 6:00pm-8:00pm.  

Monday, September 11, 2017

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Last week NCS hosted its second writers workshop performance titled Moments at Clement's Place on the campus of Rutgers University. This class included participants from a local treatment program, Integrity House, as well as the Delaney Hall Detention Facility. Participants wrote their one act plays with guidance from our amazing "playwright in residence" Jeremy Camps. Their plays were then performed by actors on stage in front of an audience of family, friends and colleagues. There was a lot of talent on display and in a Q&A after the performance, the writes got a chance to talk about the experiences that inspired their writing. This is easily one of the most fascinating and inspiring events we take part in.  Big thanks to NCS Clinical Director Colleen Smith who makes it all happen!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Newark Community Solutions Victims Services (NCS-VS) 
Opens it's Doors in the South Ward
   Victim Services Coordinator Tonya Tucker and Peer Mentor Lorenzo Nash outside the Hawthorne Ave office

Overview: Community violence comes in many different forms. And with every instance of violence there are one or more victims left to deal with the consequences.  Oftentimes, these individuals experience mental health symptoms, including post-traumatic stress, in addition to any sustained physical injuries.  These “invisible” symptoms can remain long after physical wounds have healed.   The goal of NCS-VS is to meet victims “where they are” and provide holistic support which will not only ease immediate grief and suffering, but provide also a foundation of support in an effort to end the cycle of violence.  
Participants: The target population for this initiative is young men and women of color, ages 18-30, who have been exposed to violence or are themselves the victim of a violent crime. 
The Process: Once an individual is referred to the program, they will complete an intake which will be used to create an individualized service plan based on the client’s needs and goals. The service plan can include a combination of on-site case management, social services referrals, and individual or group counseling.  NCS-VS utilizes the S.E.L.F. psycho-educational group curriculum, an evidence-supported and trauma-informed approach to working with victims. Staff will also work with community volunteers to offer skill -building workshops in areas including parenting, employment, and wellness. Direct linkages with community-based programs will be made for clients needing a higher level of care for substance abuse, mental health, and co-occurring disorders.
Are you interested or know someone who could benefit from services?  
Please stop by, call or send us an email  
 Newark Community Solutions Victims Services (NCS-VS)
223 Hawthorne Ave., first floor Newark, NJ
phone: 833-434-0881

Friday, September 1, 2017

Community Service in Action!!
Alternative Sanctions Specialist Trevor Powell oversees community service at the 8th St garden

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Lincoln Park Music Festival

Attracting over 50,000 visitors yearly, the Lincoln Park Music Festival (LPMF) – A Celebration of Spirit and Dance -  is a cultural ambassador and signature event in the City of Newark. LPMF is part of the economic development activities led by Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District (LPCCD) in Newark, New Jersey’s historic Lincoln Park section.  

Newark Community Solutions and Newark Youth Court staff and interns table at the event every year to provide the public with information about our programs, meet and mingle with other local organizations and, of course, enjoy the music! Thanks to NCS Victims Services Coordinator Tonya Tucker for organizing and to everyone who contributed to making this a great day!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Community Service in Action!!

Newark Youth Court members getting to work at the Rabbit Hole Farm!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Monday, March 6, 2017

Exciting New Partnerships - Whole Foods in Newark!

There was a buzz in the air the morning of Wednesday, March 1st as the highly anticipated Newark Whole Foods was set to open to the public!  Early that morning a large crowd assembled in the atrium of the Hahne and Company building to hear remarks from Whole Foods President Christina Minardi, Whole Cities Foundation Executive Director Meredith Smith, and Newark Mayor Ras Baraka. As part of the festivities, Whole Cities Foundation, a non-profit arm of Whole Foods, announced the winners of the 2017 Newark Fresh, Healthy Food Access Grant, and Newark Community Solutions was thrilled to be named one of 11 Newark recipients!  NCS’s winning plan will bring together staff, program participants and an intern from Rutgers -Newark to rejuvenate the NCS garden, part of the City of Newark’s Adopt-A-Lot Network.  Once the garden is thriving, all fruit, vegetables and herbs will be donated to the New Hope Baptist soup kitchen to complete the community service cycle of growing, harvesting, cooking and serving food to Newarkers in need.

Committed to growing the local food system and increasing access to fresh, healthy food in Newark, Newark Community Solutions is especially excited to partner with the Whole Cities Foundation and New Hope Baptist Church to begin our work providing new opportunities to members of the community.

To learn more about the ceremony, find Brick City Live’s article recapping the morning, here.

Winners of the  2017 Newark Fresh, Healthy Food Access Grant -
accepting for NCS was Planner, Jordan Otis (4th from left)

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Congressman Payne Visits Newark Community Solutions

This past Tuesday Newark Community Solutions was honored to host Congressman Donald Payne Jr. and his staff.  The Congressman observed court and then took time to speak with both Newark Municipal Court and Newark Community Solutions staff in the courtroom as well as program participants in the NCS clinic.  The Congressman said he was proud to see all Newark Community Solutions has accomplished since his time serving as Newark City Council President during the program’s planning and launch in 2011.  Again we thank the Congressman and his staff for their time and commitment to criminal justice reform in the City of Newark, and we look forward to continued collaboration throughout the year.