Date of Graduation

Spring 2018

Document Type

Honors Research Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science

Research Sponsor

Dr. Bill Lyons

First Reader

Dr. Matthew Lee

Second Reader

Dr. Carolyn Behrman


The following paper is an examination of three organizations, Vamos Puerto Rico, The Well CDC, and the Karen Community of Akron, who are working towards the betterment of their community by fighting the injustices that their communities face. In this paper, I argue that the choices made by each of these three organizations, reflected in their organizational structure and the initiatives they focus on, can be understood as linked to the common goal of the beloved community when examined through the framework of the six steps of nonviolent social change. The steps of nonviolent social change are information gathering, education, personal commitment, discussion/negation, direct action, and reconciliation and, through their implementation, they represent people-focused social change and its complexities and how these organizations are working to effectively catalyze their communities toward a beloved community.