What We Do

PopUp for Change brings teens together to transform urban spaces into vibrant PopUp hair salons, food trucks, and supper clubs that tackle issues of social justice. We use design thinking and Jewish values of social justice to explore, listen and respond to the needs of the community and to make real change in the world.

In summer 2017, our teens created a PopUp Hair Salon for senior citizens in need at the Sirovich Center on the Lower East Side. During the two week program that was based at the 14th Street Y in New York City, we provided over 150 haircuts and manicures, served over 200 snacks and danced and played board games as we connected personally with each senior that came to the salon. Our PopUp Supper Club in summer 2016 transformed the evening meal at the Sirovich Center into a lively communal gathering. Our teens collaborated with the chef to prepare dishes that highlighted the diverse ethnic cuisines of the seniors and attendance numbers soared. In 2015, based at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, our teens worked with residents of a low-income housing development and local farmers to create and operate a PopUp Food Truck – bringing healthy food options to the community. Read more about us in Tablet Magazine

PopUp for Change was a completely different experience than anything I had done before. It allowed me to design a PopUp Hair Salon opposed to simply volunteering for an already existing project.
— Julia, 2017 participant
Although I thought I already had empathy, my awareness and perspective has changed a lot.
— Chris, 2017 participant

Who We Are

How We Do It

At PopUp for Change teens tackle issues of social justice using design thinking—an approach to problem solving that promotes empathy and applies an iterative approach to generating creative solutions.

Let's connect!

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How to apply

PopUp for Change has decided to suspend its programming for the summer of 2018, please check back with us for updates on future programs.