A Message from the Executive Director

Dear Friends and Supporters:

In 2007, we launched the first NewGround cohort. Today, we’ve created a network of more than 400 alumni, and currently have 40 more leaders participating in our 2019-2020 programming; these Change-makers are now partners in action with multiple Muslim and Jewish communities and initiatives throughout greater Los Angeles. That action is how we know that change and communality are achievable within our city. It’s why NewGround has been praised in the Chronicle of Philanthropy and by the Aspen Institute, it’s why our work was highlighted by the Harvard Pluralism Project as a Promising Practice, and it’s why we’ve additionally been mentioned by Al Jazeera, Haaretz, and The Huffington Post, among others.

In 2014, NewGround programs reached 2,500 people. In the midst of tragic loss of life that summer, NewGround convened our largest Iftar on record at the time with nearly 300 people in attendance. In 2019, amidst new tragedies and fresh wounds, NewGround’s Iftar brought in a whopping nearly 400 attendees. 

Our Iftar is not the only instance in which we see community bonding, though. NewGround organizes alumni gatherings, and though immensely uncomfortable and filled with raw emotion, people remain in the room and practice a radical empathy that is challenging to the core. By embracing discomfort, complexity and one another, NewGround alumni work through tensions with curiosity and compassion.

All of this has been accomplished with your partnership and support.

I invite you to join me in expanding our impact over the course of our 2019-20 year.

  • Envision the benefits to Los Angeles if NewGround was able to train a new cadre of facilitators who could moderate group dialogue in their respective communities. Transformative relationships are something we specialize in, and this would further facilitate our mission and vision of transforming communities through the power of relationships.
  • Imagine how far our vision could reach with an amplified NewGround presence in Muslim and Jewish California communities. First, we worked on our online accessibility; just a couple of years ago, we worked with a branding firm that helped us realize how much more effective our message can be if we articulate it differently. It was just the beginning.

Join me in making a meaningful tax-deductible contribution to NewGround.

Thank you for your commitment to promoting lasting change. Let’s make the future one of solidarity and understanding.


Aziza Hasan

NewGround. Transforming communities through the power of relationship.