Connecting the people and places of Southwest Detroit to each other and to the people and places of other communities (around shared needs and passions?) through digital media programming, partnerships, and content.

Since 1999 Inside Southwest Detroit has been working to develop a vision and practice of community-driven narrative building and asset-based organizing, addressing and responding to community needs with existing community assets.

iSWD Media promotes media access and participation by supporting community-driven narratives, media creation, and access to information and skill building. We believe that Digital Justice promotes healthy communities.

For more about Digital Justice check out Allied Media Projects' Digital Justice principles HERE


Programming, Partnerships, and Content.


Digital Media + Visual Storytelling

Our photography and other digital media workshops teach visual storytelling by learning to craft imagery and language to be shared in online platforms.  With the ever presence of shared narratives, comes a need to own your story and to understand the privacy and security associated with this.  Our digital media workshops teach people to effectively use the tools available and to maximize engagement by others with their media. (YDPS?, SSS#SWD? w/ La Sirena?) 

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iSWD LiveMix with DJ Skipz

A live, interactive DJ set to build community and promote engagement and offline interaction broadcast through our Facebook feed. The LiveMix brings people together online in way that they can interact dynamically with the music, the artist, and with each other. 

Started in January 2017, The iSWD LiveMix is Young Nation’s soundtrack to leveraging digital media to promote informed and engaged community.  

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See, Shoot, Share #SWDetroit Exhibit

In an effort to uplift community-driven narratives we developed a physical and online exhibition highlighting four young visual storytellers from Southwest Detroit in 2013.  Community-driven narrative should be accessible—including being created with affordable and easy-to-use-tools, be well crafted or curated, and available in digital and/or physical spaces.  Our featured storytellers Nyasia Valdez, Rosa Maria Zamarron, Antonio Cosme, and Chris Diegel each used their cell phones to capture and caption images of their neighborhood.  Their works were displayed at La Terraza restaurant in their then-new space on Vernor and Wendell and were also featured online.

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Partnerships (in Digital Media +/or Organizing?)

Our partners are youth from Southwest Detroit, residents hyper-locally, artists, and organizations-both for-profit and non-profit, nearby and internationally.  We begin our processes of developing projects with broad input from those groups and narrow to a smaller committee that further develops and carries out.  Our curation committee made up of artists and residents, is currently identifying visiting artists-in-residence to provide workshops, exhibitions and co-creation with youth and local artists.

To date we have partnered with more than 20 organizations including: Allied Media Projects, Grace in Action, Detroit Collaborative Design Center, Et Al. Collaborative, Documenting Detroit, Detroit Future Youth Network, Garage Cultural, MotorCity Street Dance Academy, WDET 101.9 FM, Uso and Good Times Car Clubs, Bleeding Heart Design, Urban Neighborhood Initiatives, and the Detroit Institute of Arts.  Artistic partners include Mary Luevanos, Sacramento Knoxx, Jordan Vaughn, Matt Merlo, Michael Luevanos, Armando Guidino (DJ Skipz), Freddy Diaz, Stitching Up Detroit, and Noah Levy.

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Connection. Access. Participation.

"We have our own platform to speak to people through the music... because of that platform we get to let people know what's going on instead of having to call the news and be like, 'Can you please come over here and make a story about the community?'.

We get to send a message, like a commercial basically, but without corporations making (stories just so they can make) money off it. Its just the community being a community."
-DJ Skipz