SWC serves A DIVERSE COMMUNITY OF APPROXIMATELY 400 CANNERS, REPRESENTING DIFFERENT ETHNICITIES, NATIONALITIES AND AGES, WHO WORKS COLLABORATIVELY WITH THE STAFF, VOLUNTEERS, STUDENTS, NEIGHBORS AND PARTNER ORGANIZATIONS. TOGETHER WE ARE BUILDING A VIBRANT, INCLUSIVE AND SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITY.

SWC provides opportunities to underserved minorities, looking for decent work, respect and even a social support system. SWC goes beyond income generation, helping people to feel integrated, valued, respected and empowered. SWC serves a community of more than 400 canners, 100 of which have this activity as their main source of income.

The community includes people of African-American, Hispanic, Asian and Caucasian backgrounds coming from more than twenty countries. Most of them lack access to other job alternatives and many do not even speak English. Ranging in age from teens to seniors, the majority of the canners community is in between 60-80 years old. SWC embraces elderly people (mostly older women) as well as homeless men and women who are working towards a decent income/life experience in the challenging urban environment of New York City.

Cultural diversity is also reflected in our staff members, board of directors and volunteers. We also welcome schools and universities, young artists and partner organizations from all backgrounds. Collective participation has been an integral aspect of SWC from the beginning.

Canners community composition

Ethnicity/Language

  • 40% Hispanic (Spanish Speaking)
  • 30% Asian (Chinese Speaking)
  • 25% African American (English Speaking)
  • 5% Caucasian (mostly Polish Speaking)

Gender

  • 45% women
  •  55% men

Couple/Family  

  • 15% work as couples or family