PSA: Indy Hall ❤️ Code for Philly

In many ways, Code for Philly and Indy Hall already have a lot of history.

In fact, you can trace our relationship at least back to 2010 when I wrote about Code for America’s presence in Philly and how it helped me define my understanding of citizenship.

“I think that the CFA process helped prime the pumps for the continued development of a new style of trusting relationship between city hall and citizens. Something that Indy Hall in particular is really good at, and we’ve been recognized for. – Alex Hillman

Since those days, the organization has both grown and matured. For example, despite the name, it’s not just coders! There are on-ramps for people with a variety of skills, interests, and experience. And while “hack nights” are still a cornerstone, CFP hosts a wide range of events across the city every month.

But one thing hasn’t changed: Code for Philly and Indy Hall share a love Philly and a dedication to community building through co-creation.

“That’s the heart of civic tech: community. No project would ever be able to get off the ground if it didn’t benefit from collective support, and volunteer effort from people who care. – Code for Philly’s Leadership Team (Rich, Toni, and Charlie)

After a few months of hosting occasional Code for Philly hack nights, we’re trying out something new and launching one of our first ever “organizational memberships.”

Rather than simply offer a venue, we’re thinking of our communities as a sum greater than the parts.

This means that the CFP leadership team now has an official “headquarters.” That doesn’t mean exclusivity – in fact, during our conversations I emphasized the importance of having the community “pop up” in various places around the city.

At the same time, and we hope that this membership allows the extended Code for Philly community can feel like they have a home, rather than like they’re always borrowing someone else’s.

We’re also actively looking for ways to connect the people in our communities. Code for Philly’s extended community is now part of the Indy Hall family. That means there are more opportunities to ask for help, and get it; more opportunities to find a project you care about, and contribute.

“What makes Code for Philly thrive, and not just survive, is being able to connect like-minded people with differing skill sets together to pursue progress via civic projects. We’ve found that same desire to bring people together in the people who call Indy Hall home. Together, we know that big changes start with a series of many smaller actions.

This is an exciting new chapter for both of us, and frankly, one that we agree should have happened sooner! Especially working together, our groups’ collective expertise and love for Philly couldn’t be a more powerful force.

You can read more from their side and find out how to join Code for Philly’s next event on their website.


Finally: if your group or business is interested in an organizational membership, drop us a line! team@indyhall.org

View All Articles

Member Profile:
Emma Sindelar & Petey Greene on WURD Radio

“Emma Sindelar, Director of Philadelphia operations for the Petey Greene Program, describes how incarcerated and returning citizens benefit from volunteer academic tutoring to prepare them for life outside of prison walls, in the spirit of a beloved media legend.”

Emma and her teammates have made Indy Hall their home for the last couple of years, and we are proud to hear her tell their story!

Give it a listen below:


 

View All Articles

How Indy Hall helped my best friend get their dream job

I always knew Indy Hall was about the community. That’s the foundation of coworking after all.

I’ve been a member for a little over a year, and it seems like every person I’ve met here has enriched my life. Some a little, some a lot.

What I didn’t realize was that Indy Hall was capable of enriching the lives of other people in my life, too.

Indy Hall isn’t just a resource for me and my fellow members.

The thing that Indy Hall gets right about community is that they welcome everyone to be a part of it, regardless of whether they’re present in the coworking space, present in Philadelphia, or even a paying member.

My best friend, Josh, lives in Los Angeles. Works in a job he hates, and has been studying in his free time to build the skills that will help him make a career change to something he loves.

Josh wants to do what Indy Hall strives to help everyone do: own their time doing what makes them happy.

Josh wanted to make a living writing code, building applications that make people’s lives easier. As his best friend and a part of Indy Hall, I knew there had to be a resource here to help him.

In our ever-active and information-filled Slack channels, a man named Jeff (who I’d never actually met in person) posted a job opening with his company that seemed like it was right up Josh’s alley.

I asked Josh if he was interested in the role, and he gave me a resounding “yes!” I then asked Jeff if I could put him in touch with Josh, to which I received another resounding “yes!”

No obstacles, no questioning, no cliques. Not even a hint of doubt between relative strangers willing to help each other out.

You see, this community is filled with hard-working, trustworthy people. Everyone is welcoming and supportive, and as a result people tend to trust each other from the start.

A short time and a few interviews later, Josh landed the job. He is able to leave a job he hates to start his journey in the career he wants, with a hefty boost in pay and a role that doesn’t even require him to leave his bed because it’s remote.

Maybe Josh will one day be a member of Indy Hall. Maybe he won’t.

But the fact that three people from three cities on different coasts, one of which had NEVER MET the other two, were able to come together to give one of them the gift of owning his time is incredible.

The effects of Indy Hall span far outside of the physical coworking space.

Community isn’t where you are or who you know. It’s how you think and live. Indy Hall knows this. And that’s what puts it above the rest.

And I have no doubt that Josh will take this experience of community and pay it forward.

View All Articles

Member Profile #5: “It’s not the job of one person to say hello”

Hi! I’m Evan Wilson. I’m a young entrepreneur spending my summer as an intern at Indy Hall.

Meeting new people is something I love to do — and in my time here, I’ve gotten to meet so many creative people who always have exciting stories to tell. After hearing so many amazing things from the Indy Hall community, I realized that I want to document the people of Indy Hall and their stories in the series: #PeopleOfIndyHall.


To me, the beauty of Indy Hall is that I can sit down and chat with anybody here about anything. I want to give you an up close and personal look at those conversations.

This week I got the chance to sit down with Arielle Tannenbaum to chat about her life, Indy Hall, and I got her answers to some out of the box questions. In her work life, Arielle builds and maintains communities, so it’s only natural that she found her way to Indy Hall.

“I build community for a company called Buffer, a social media management platform, to help users find ways build relationships with each other and become better social media users” she tells me when I asked about how she spends her time at Indy Hall.

Arielle is a people person and even when it seems like she is just staring at her computer all day, she wants people to know that she’s “actually talking to people across the world through Slack and social media.”

I wanted to know more about her and her path to Indy Hall, and I wasn’t surprised to hear that she has been interested in people and community for a long time. She originally was on track to going to grad school for psychology until she took some time off to work for a non-profit, and eventually ended up being the community manager for another local coworking space.


She quickly makes the distinction between Indy Hall and her previous space:

“I have experienced other coworking spaces and I used to run one in Philly, but there’s nothing quite like the community at Indy Hall. What really makes a difference is the fact that people are wanting to make those connections.”

In her mind, what separates Indy Hall is the people in it and the interest they have in being a community, not just a space with a bunch of desks. She continues:

“In other spaces people go to work and if they meet someone in the meantime — that’s a plus — but I think here it’s built into the DNA of the community. You sit here and you know someone’s going to talk to you and other people are seeing you; it’s not the job of someone to say hello, it’s the spirit of the space.”

At a certain point in the conversation I like to start asking more ‘out there’ questions to see how ‘out there’ Indy Hall members’ answers can get. Arielle had a groovy answer to the question of where she would travel if she could go anywhere in space and time.

“I would not travel to outer space because I’m terrified of it. I would never want to jump on a pioneering journey to mars: that’s not my speed. For fun I’d probably go to the 60’s, because I’m very into meditation and yoga and free-spiritedness. I feel like I identify as a Hippie sometimes, but I want to know what it was like to be part of that counter-cultural revolutionary movement in the 60s.”

Being the community builder and people person she is, Arielle’s answer to the cliche superhero power question was way more thoughtful than I would be.

“I would probably want to fly, but I think it would be really cool if I could identify what someone needs the most and help them get that.

For example, if someone’s really upset about something I would want to actually know what they’re upset about and say the right thing.”

To wrap up, being the foodie that I am, I like to talk food, so I asked her what food she couldn’t live without.

“I have tried to give up cheese before, and I just cannot give up cheese, but who knows, maybe I’ll change my mind in a few years, but for right now I cannot give up cheese.”

View All Articles

Member Profile #4: A Kiwi is a bird, not a fruit.

Hi! I’m Evan Wilson. I’m a young entrepreneur spending my summer as an intern at Indy Hall. Meeting new people is something I love to do — and in my time here, I’ve gotten to meet so many creative people who always have exciting stories to tell. After hearing a lot of amazing things from the Indy Hall community, I realized that I want to document the people of Indy Hall and their stories in the series: #PeopleOfIndyHall.

To me, the beauty of Indy Hall is that I can sit down and chat with anybody here about anything. I want to give you an up close and personal look at those conversations.


This week I got the chance to sit down with Lachlan Priest to chat about his life, Indy Hall, and I got his answers to some out of the box questions. In his work life, Lachlan is the Co-founder and CTO of his company, Advocately, that helps businesses grow faster by building better relationships with their existing customers.

Continue reading this article…

View All Articles