What is a Community Partner?
NHMLAC has partnered with a number of community-based organizations, or "Community Partners," which are engaged in active communication, listening, collaboration, and co-creation. Community Partners have committed to working with the Community Engagement team in a meaningful way to build a better community together. Many of these organizations are local to our Museums and embedded in grassroots work to improve the lives of the communities they serve.
The Museum Amongst the Community
The Museum consistently strives to be an institution that is for, with, and of the community of Los Angeles. The work of the Community Engagement team takes the Museum to the people, engaging communities from the coasts to the mountains! We invite to you to scroll through the photos below to see the Museum engaging with its Community Partners all over the Greater Los Angeles region.
In collaboration with the Columbia Memorial Space Center's City of STEM initiative, the Museum participated in the 2023 City of STEM + Los Angeles Maker Faire. Held in L.A.'s State Historic Park, this festival was a celebration of all things STEM featuring hundreds of booths from science-based organizations from across the country.
The Wild L.A.: Explore the Amazing Nature In and Around L.A. grant-funded program* is a cross-departmental effort that brings together the Museum’s Community Partners and Museum experts to increase outdoor equity. During a Wild L.A. camp out at Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area, herpetologist Dr. Greg Pauly demonstrates to a group of inquisitive youngsters the proper way to handle a lizard.
*This program is funded by the Outdoor Equity Grants Program, created through AB 209 and administered by California State Parks, Office of Grants, and Local Services.
In collaboration with the Education & Cultural Learning Department (ECLD) of the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians, the Museum co-created the third annual Acorn Gathering event at William S. Hart Park in Santa Clarita. Part of this event included the collecting and processing of native coast live oak acorns into acorn flour. Here, the young participant proudly displays her mortal full of ground acorns. This co-hosted program was developed with the ECLD which provides holistic services for K-12 Native Youth who currently reside on the Fernandeño Tataviam’s ancestral lands.
The Museum brings its fossil sorting activity to the City of Los Angeles' 4th of July celebration at Gloria Molina Grand Park.
Braving the heat at the Vasquez Ricks Natural Area and Nature Center, Anna-Lisa Taylor, Learning & Development Manager for Guest Relations, stands behind a table displaying a language revitalization activity co-developed with the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians. This activity was developed with the Tribe's Education & Cultural Learning Department, which provides holistic services for K-12 Native Youth who currently reside on the Fernandeño Tataviam’s ancestral lands.
Senior Manager of Community Engagement, Milena Acosta, co-developed a presentation on nature in L.A. for Community Partner, University Seventh Day Adventist Church. Participants had the opportunity to explore taxidermy animals, make observations, and go on a bug hunt in the Museum's Nature Gardens.
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Community Partners at the Museum
When Community Partners come to the Museum, they are immersed in an environment where they can let their imaginations and creativity run free. Several of our Partners have come to the Museum to partake in community bird watching, garden strolls, exhibit tours, and to showcase their collective work. The Museum will always remain a safe and welcoming space for our Partners. Click through the slideshow below to discovers some of the ways that our Partners engage with the Museum.
A member of the Ahmanson Senior Center peers through a bird watching scope in the Nature Gardens. The members of the Ahmanson Senior Center in Exposition Park are the Museum's neighbors and longtime Community Partners. This early morning nature walk focused on spotting a variety of birds in an urban environment.
Teapot Gardens L.A., a non-profit family organization dedicated to parks-based art and culture recreation, used the Museum's edible gardens as a setting for a workshop on the relationship between color and emotion.
Members of the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians' (FTBMI) summer camp are led on a behind-the-scenes tour of the La Brea Tar Pits. The Museum has co-developed several programs with the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians in order to spark conversation and action about cultural and linguistic revitalization efforts.
Community Partners from Korean American Family Services peer into a pond as a part of the Museum's camp out. The camp out is designed to be an inviting introduction to the outdoors for first-time or novice campers.
The Museum welcomed community partner L.A. Metro On the Move Riders to a special tour of the first floor African and North American Mammal Halls. Metro's On the Move Riders is a program designed to encourage safe and effective ridership amongst seniors living in Los Angeles. Special guest Tim Bovard, the Museum taxidermist, gave them a special tour of the diorama halls.
Community Partners at PJ Library were invited to NHM for a special co-created celebration of Jewish heritage and history! Attendees had the opportunity to meet and greet Hunter the T-rex (pictured here), and participate in a scavenger hunt that connected Museum artifacts to Jewish culture!
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And Much More!
Scroll through the photos below to see more ways in which the Community and the Museum have collaborated and co-created programs that center the aspirational goals of their community.
The Ahmanson Senior Center enjoys private walking hours in the Museum's Nature Gardens, and Butterfly Pavilion!
Community Partners from Teapot Gardens enjoy seasonal visits to the Museum gardens. On this day the group had the opportunity to made friends with Odin the Western Screech Owl.
The Museums care deeply about accessibility and were excited to host the Guide Dogs of America for a day of fun and adventure at NHM!
Community Engagement team member Maggie Romero chats with a Community Partner from Courage Camps during the celebration of their feature in Gutsy.
The Community Engagement team enjoyed bringing marine fossils found in San Pedro to South L.A.'s iconic food festival, the Taste of Soul.
The Museum's Community Engagement team hosted Community Partners from LA Metro's On the Move Riders Program (OTMRP) and leadership from the South Bay's parks and recreational spaces. OTMRP works to empower older adults with the information and confidence to travel on fixed-route transportation, by providing one-on-one and/or group travel training, informational transit tours, and safety education presentations. This group traveled to the Museum via train and bus to showcase the ease of using LA Metro transit to access the Museum!
Community Partners at WriteGirl were invited to NHM's Becoming Jane Welcome Day where they had the opportunity to participate in an interactive reflection activity. Prompts for the activity were written by WriteGirl's Bold Leaders!
Community Partners at Korean American Family Services received a free copy of WildLA signed by author Lila Higgins, while attending NHM's Camp Out.
Learn more about Korean American Family Services at www.kfamla.org.
Community Partners from University Seventh Day Adventist Church were invited to volunteer at NHM MLK Day. The group assisted by cutting leaves for the Museum's Diorama Hall displays!
Community Partners from Korean American Family Services attend NHM's Urban Ocean Expedition at Alta Sea. Attendees had the opportunity to explore the marine life that lives off the coast of our Southern California waters.
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Get in Touch
If you would like to know more about the work of Community Engagement or would like to discuss becoming a Community Partner, please contact us at email@example.com.
We hope that you will visit us at the Museum soon to become inspired to learn more and engage with our natural and cultural worlds!