What's the buzz? This is where you'll find recent news about Civic Nebraska.

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Strengthening Democracy: Eric Garcia-Mendez
The organizer, advocate, and change-maker, who has led the elevation and development of local leaders from communities across Grand Island, is our 2023 Community Builder.
March 24, 2023
‘Voices and Votes’: Coming to a Nebraska town near you
Throughout the year, we'll be providing special resources to communities where the exhibition will be on display – including Howells, Kearney, Belvidere, Wahoo, Gering, and Omaha.
March 22, 2023
Costly, less accurate elections: we oppose LB457 & LB808
On March 22, 2023, Civic Nebraska submitted written opposition to LB457 and LB808. The bills would impose invasive constant video surveillance of voters and require hand counts of ballots, respectively. Here's our testimony on each of these bad bills.
March 22, 2023
Be an Election Protector on May 2
Election observation protects the integrity of and helps maintain public confidence in our electoral processes.
March 20, 2023
Pro-voter bills: testimony on LB365, LB604, LB742
On March 16, Civic Nebraska Director of Public Policy Heidi Uhing testified on a trio of pro-voter bills. Here is her testimony as prepared.
March 16, 2023
Our 2023 Strengthening Democracy Awards honorees are …
The 2023 Strengthening Democracy Awards honorees include educators, advocates, students, and everyday Nebraskans who demonstrate exceptional civic leadership and who embody Civic Nebraska’s vision of a collaborative, innovative society.
March 15, 2023
Re-enfranchisement; Electoral College; election commissioners: our testimony
On March 15, Civic Nebraska Director of Public Policy Heidi Uhing testified on a trio of election-related bills. Here is her testimony as prepared.
March 15, 2023
‘Redundant, inefficient, adversarial’: our testimony on LR2CA
On March 9, 2023, Director of Public Policy Heidi Uhing testified in opposition to a proposed constitutional amendment that would do away with the Nebraska Legislature's unicameral and nonpartisan traditions.
March 9, 2023
‘Ensure access to the polls’: our LB770 testimony
A larger, ongoing, and more coordinated effort is needed in order to identify all the upgrades needed across the state and to fund that work so no voter faces barriers to the polls.
March 8, 2023
At the statehouse: ADA audits; bicameral Legislature
We’re watching two pieces of legislation that are set for public hearings this week. You can weigh in on both until noon CST the day before each hearing.
March 7, 2023
It’s National Civic Learning Week – let’s celebrate!
From March 6-10, 2023, teachers, researchers, students, and citizens across the United States are leaning into ways to strengthen civics education.
March 6, 2023
What? So What? Now What?: LB20 goes to the floor
This week, restoring voting rights for Nebraskans who have fully paid their debt to society advanced from committee to the full Legislature. Here's what that means.
March 3, 2023
Love the Capitol? Volunteer with us at the statehouse
Our Capitol Experience Day volunteers support Civic Nebraska by providing additional supervision and assistance where needed to ensure a positive educational experience for all participants.
March 2, 2023
Meet Alexis Lipson, Lincoln Northeast School Community Coordinator
Alexis works with the Rocket community to create effective programs for the teens participating in the CLC. She also directs daily CLC activities and builds neighborhood partnerships.
March 2, 2023
‘Not all voter ID laws are created equal’: Our March…
On March 1, 2023, Civic Nebraska Director of Public Policy Heidi Uhing testified in support of LB675 and in opposition to LB228 and LB230.
March 1, 2023
Q&A with Michael Bandy, director of Youth Civic Leadership
Michael Bandy has been promoted to director of our Youth Civic Leadership programs, which serve hundreds of students across Nebraska daily.
March 1, 2023
A salute to Kent Day
Our founding Director of Youth Civic Leadership programs is retiring March 1. Executive Director and Founder Adam Morfeld shares his thoughts on Kent’s impact.
February 27, 2023
Meet Nobel nominee Desmond Meade on April 13
Join Civic Nebraska to celebrate Nebraskans who build a more modern and robust democracy. Attendees will enjoy a keynote speech from national voting rights advocate and 2023 Nobel Peace Prize nominee Desmond Meade.
February 24, 2023
Voter ID: Speak up March 1 for voting rights
Our state senators need you to add your voice to this discussion so that they fully understand the costs, complications, and consequences of all three voter ID proposals.
February 23, 2023
‘We have a duty to act’: our testimony on LB20
On Feb. 22, 2023, Civic Nebraska Director of Public Policy Heidi Uhing testified in support of LB20, which would remove an arbitrary two-year waiting period for former felons to regain their right to vote.
February 22, 2023
In Good Faith: A Civic Sermon
"In so many ways, that’s the story of America — an enduring confidence in something you can’t see, but you know in your heart of hearts that it exists."
February 18, 2023
Restore the vote! Help advance LB20
The Government Committee will hear public testimony on Feb. 22.
February 15, 2023
Election 2023: Mail-in ballot requests landing in Lincoln mailboxes
On April 4, Lincoln voters will select general-election candidates for mayor, City Council, school board, and the Lincoln Airport Authority. Less than a month later, primary winners will square off in the general election.
February 14, 2023
The midterms were a success. Let’s make our elections even…
The continued popularity of early mail-in voting in Nebraska in the most recent midterm elections is an opportunity for officials and lawmakers to invest in making the absentee ballot process even better, a Civic Nebraska report shows.
February 13, 2023
Bee our guest: Civic Valentines for you
This Valentine's Day, share your love of America and democracy.
February 11, 2023
‘A critical component’: our testimony on LB254
Director of Public Policy Heidi Uhing testified on Feb. 10 on LB254, which would enable legislative footage to be used in civic education efforts, in schools, by the media, and by advocacy organizations.
February 10, 2023
Strengthening Democracy nominations are open
Nominate a Nebraskan who builds a more modern and robust democracy. Winners will be honored at Strengthening Democracy Awards on April 13 in Omaha.
February 6, 2023
‘Reason for concern’: our testimony on LB535
Heidi Uhing, Civic Nebraska's director of public policy, testified in opposition to a voter ID bill being considered by the Nebraska Legislature's Government Committee.
February 1, 2023
LB535: Need-to-knows about testifying
You can ensure state senators fully understand the costs, complications, and consequences of such a measure.
January 31, 2023
Family Literacy sees early success at LHS
A new Family Literacy class housed in the Lincoln High after-school Community Learning Center is giving English-language learners a way to learn while bonding with their families.
January 30, 2023
Celebrate! It’s Global Community Engagement Day
Jan. 28 is Global Community Engagement Day, a time to remind us all that our communities are stronger when we own them together.
January 28, 2023
A plan for creative placemaking
A grant from the Lincoln Arts Council will enable Collective Impact Lincoln and LUX Center for the Arts to create accessible community art – and strengthen civic fabric – in the capital city's University Place neighborhood.
January 27, 2023
Speak up! Voter ID hearing is Feb. 1
Your voice is needed so that committee members fully understand the ramifications of such a measure.
January 25, 2023
Student voice in civic education: LB225 testimony
On Jan. 23, 2023, Civic Nebraska testified before the Education Committee of the Nebraska Legislature in support of Legislative Bill 225. Here's our testimony. 
January 24, 2023
We’re discussing discourse – join us!
We're looking for Nebraskans who have demonstrated civil discourse among groups of family, friends, or co-workers – and who can share with others how it's done.
January 23, 2023
Allie’s story: From volunteer to community advocate
Senior Community Organizer Allie Christianson on her journey into community with Collective Impact Lincoln.
January 23, 2023
Restoring the vote in ’23: ‘We’re going to get it…
The legislation would benefit about 20,000 Nebraskans who have paid their debt to society.
January 20, 2023
Partnering to build up youth and poetry
During a yearlong mentorship with the next Nebraska Youth Poet Laureate, Civic Nebraska will assist with the creation, implementation, and support of a civic engagement project of the poet's design.
January 19, 2023
Join us Feb. 18 for a special Civic Saturday
Our first Civic Saturday of '23 will be at the Nebraska History Museum to celebrate a new exhibition on American democracy.
January 19, 2023
LB675 fulfills ID requirements, accommodates Nebraska voters
LB675 would satisfy a newly adopted amendment to the state Constitution regarding voter identification while maintaining and protecting access to the franchise for all Nebraskans.
January 18, 2023
LB225: student voice in civics education
The bill adds a student representative to each Nebraska school district’s Committee on American Civics and provides new options to learn about voting, elections, and civic duty.
January 12, 2023
Desmond Meade to keynote Strengthening Democracy 2023
The national voting rights activist led the 2018 campaign to restore voting rights to former felons in Florida.
January 11, 2023
First set of voter ID bills would punish Nebraska voters 
The bills, the first of several expected to address voter identification, show the extreme lengths some are willing to go to make it harder for Nebraskans to vote.
January 10, 2023
Civic Nebraska @ the Statehouse: proposed rules changes
The Legislature's Rules Committee will be meeting at 1:30 pm on Thursday, Jan. 12, in Hearing Room 1525 at the State Capitol to consider dozens of rules change proposals.
January 10, 2023
Civic Buddies is back
The virtual read-alongs with our Omaha after-school programs bring different ages together, build literacy, and promote strong citizenship.
January 9, 2023
Restore the vote: Let’s get LB20 passed in 2023
Punishing people by restricting their right to vote for years beyond their sentence is archaic, excessive, and unjustified – and LB20 would correct that. 
January 5, 2023
The life and legacy of Jan Gradwohl
Throughout her long and consequential life, Jan was dedicated to equality before the law and justice.
January 4, 2023
Civic Nebraska @ the Statehouse: 2023 preview
The Nebraska Legislature convenes on Jan. 4. Here's what we're watching.
January 3, 2023
Service, advocacy, connection: Civic Nebraska in 2023
Some New Year's resolutions to build a more modern and robust democracy.
January 1, 2023
Serving, gathering, getting out the vote: our 2022 in review
With record-setting midterms, 2022 was exciting and eventful. Now, the work truly begins.
December 29, 2022
Civic education gets a big year-end boost
The $23 million allocation in the year-end omnibus bill includes investments in classroom instruction in civics, government and history, service learning, and media literacy.
December 28, 2022
The Complete Patriot’s Guide to Christmas traditions
Christmas is celebrated by billions around the world. No one does it quite like us Americans.
December 20, 2022
Ask not what your CLC can do for you …
Students in our Sherman Elementary School after-school program are putting a cap on their semester by engaging in an electoral process of their own.
December 16, 2022
Protect our nonpartisan Legislature
Our state senators must have the freedom to vote for who they believe is most qualified to serve in leadership roles at the statehouse.
December 14, 2022
The 2022 general election: safe, secure, certified
Here's a look at a few key metrics into how the electorate performed this past fall.
December 13, 2022
‘Crossing Divides’ shows media consumption habits, concerns
The project highlighted perceptions about trustworthy news source characteristics and concerns about media, and how those perceptions and concerns influence Nebraskans' news habits.
December 12, 2022
What? So What? Now What?: SCOTUS and Moore v. Harper
A primer on a U.S. Supreme Court case – and the fringe constitutional theory behind it – that could radically change American elections.
December 6, 2022
Stopping the slide and strengthening democracy
A new report shows global democracy in decline and advises governments to take bold steps to protect it. But it's not just up to elected officials. Here's how we all can act locally and protect democracy here at home.
December 1, 2022
Democracy’s Dozen: 12 documentaries to stream this winter
12 documentaries and docuseries worthy of your attention and engagement.
November 28, 2022
This holiday, argue like an American
How to meaningfully engage with those with whom we may vigorously disagree.
November 22, 2022
Citizenship in an age of consumerism
Our democracy is not a business. It is not transactional. It is built on mutual trust and action that require much more than our narrow self-interests.
November 21, 2022
DARE MIGHTY THINGS: Our 2022-23 annual report
Democracy requires people’s vigilance, faith, and courage to persist. Backed by supporters like you, Civic Nebraska leads the defense of democracy in the Cornhusker State.
November 18, 2022
What? So What? Now What?: Voting rights restoration
In Nebraska, people previously convicted of a felony must wait an additional two years past the completion of their sentence – including probation and parole – to vote. It's time for that to change.
November 14, 2022
The discomfort of different beans (and other hazards of the…
A work of short fiction from Astrid Munn.
November 10, 2022
Statement on Initiative 432
We are grateful to our partners and volunteers for educating voters on the costs, complications, and consequences of Initiative 432.
November 8, 2022
Nebraska election ends; handful of voter concerns addressed
As Election Day progressed on Tuesday, Civic Nebraska worked with voters and election officials to remedy a number of concerns in Lancaster, Douglas, and Buffalo counties.
November 8, 2022
So far, so good: Few issues as Nebraskans go to…
There have been no reports of voter intimidation or active electioneering at the state’s polling places or early mail-in dropboxes in each of Nebraska’s 93 counties.
November 8, 2022
New record for early vote in Nebraska midterms
If officials' participation projections come to pass, roughly 40 percent of the 2022 vote in Nebraska will come early.
November 7, 2022
‘War must never stop you from doing what you love’
A special gift for a Lincoln High CLC participant from war-torn Ukraine means beautiful music here in Lincoln.
November 2, 2022
In campaign’s final week, vote-by-mail numbers look strong
Returned ballots should close rapidly by this year's final submission deadline (8 pm CDT on Nov. 8), possibly achieving an all-time high for early participation in a Nebraska midterm. 
November 1, 2022
Rising Stars recap: the enduring power of CLCs
On Oct. 28, we welcomed 125 friends and supporters to Sherman Elementary School in Omaha for a celebration of our before- and after-school programs – and the people who make them great.
October 31, 2022
The Nebraska voter’s guide to voter intimidation
A free, democratic society requires each voter to have the right to cast their ballot free from intimidation or coercion.
October 31, 2022
Songs to vote (early) to: 2022 edition
In honor of #EarlyVoteDay, here's our playlist for casting your early ballot.
October 27, 2022
Views on the news? Share them Oct. 29.
The conversation will take place this Saturday, Oct. 29, from 9:30 to 11:30 am at the Lincoln Community Foundation building, 215 Centennial Mall South, in downtown Lincoln. 
October 24, 2022
Dare Mighty Things: a Civic Sermon
"We can be the group of Americans who stepped up when democracy around the world was under assault; who stood up for pluralism, compromise, tolerance, and the common good. Who stared down the danger to our democracy and said 'Not here. Not now.'"
October 22, 2022
Vote Early Day is Oct. 28 – let’s celebrate!
Civic Nebraska is among hundreds of groups and individuals across the nation taking part in Vote Early Day.
October 19, 2022
This Thanksgiving, let’s talk turkey.
This November, Civic Nebraska challenges you to break bread with a politically diverse group in your community. Five applications will be selected to receive a $50 stipend that can go toward a hosted meal.
October 17, 2022
It’s in the game: CLC students learn, lead with esports
Leadership, communication, and collaboration are important skills to have in a democracy. They also work well in the world of competitive esports. 
October 14, 2022
7 things to know about Initiative 432
Politicians want to rewrite the Nebraska Constitution to add strict photo ID requirements in order to vote. This would severely restrict *all* voters via lengthy, repetitive steps and employ new technicalities to disqualify eligible voters from rightfully casting a ballot.
October 12, 2022
Testimony recap: No to Initiative 432
For thousands of Nebraska voters, voter ID would be a hindrance and impediment to freely casting a ballot.
October 6, 2022
Calling all Election Protectors – you’re up
Civic Nebraska is seeking volunteers to serve as Election Protectors – nonpartisan election observers – to monitor the Nov. 8 general election in Nebraska.
October 4, 2022
The ballots are coming! The ballots are coming!
Here are a few best practices to ensure a successful vote-by-mail experience.
October 3, 2022
Introducing Audrey Nance, Capitol Experience Day coordinator
The Lincoln native and Lincoln High / Arts and Humanities Focus Program alumna will lead our educational efforts at the State Capitol and elsewhere for the benefit of students across the state.
September 28, 2022
Initiative 432 hearings are set: Stand up and be counted
Join your fellow Nebraskans in saying *No to 432* at one or all of three opportunities to speak in October. 
September 28, 2022
Civic Saturday: Dare Mighty Things is Oct. 22 in Lincoln
Join us for live, sing-along music from Jonathan Leach, original poetry from Jordan Charlton, inspiring readings of “civic scripture” from community members, and a “civic sermon” from Civic Nebraska's Steve Smith, a local author, community advocate, and national Civic Saturday fellow.
September 26, 2022
Welcome to Nandar Win, YSEALI fellow
Nandar, of Myanmar, is in residency with Civic Nebraska this fall via the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Professional Fellowship Program. Here is more about Nandar in his own words.
September 23, 2022
The cost of voting: Where does Nebraska rank?
The Cornhusker State’s ease-of-voting ranking has slipped since 2020 – and would most certainly slide farther if voter ID is imposed in 2023.
September 22, 2022
Busting the myth of ‘young people don’t vote’
The University of Nebraska is looking to build on its strong tradition of turning out the student vote in 2022. In 2020, the university had a 92 percent voter registration rate and a 74 percent turnout rate.
September 20, 2022
It’s National Voter Registration Day – you know what to…
Check your registration status and get registered to vote.
September 20, 2022
Taking it to the streets! The Civic Sidewalk Series returns
From Sept. 25 to Oct. 1, Lincoln, Omaha, and Grand Island artists will be on the ground – literally – to emphasize the importance of voting.
September 16, 2022
Democracy Day 2022: Reminders, reflection, and a road map
American news and information outlets are drawing attention to the threat of democratic backsliding, providing important context on where American democracy stands, and sharing what Americans can do to defend it.
September 15, 2022
No to strict voter ID. No to Initiative 432.
Voter suppression in Nebraska has an official name and number: Initiative Measure 432. Here are a few other figures to consider this election season.
September 12, 2022
Sept. 20: Help get out the vote!
Every eligible American voter should have the option to exercise their right to be heard at the ballot box, and National Voter Registration Day is the right day to start by getting registered.
September 12, 2022
Facts, reason, and voter ID
Just because there has never been a case of voter impersonation in Nebraska doesn’t mean it isn’t actually happening. Right? Wrong.
September 8, 2022
Courts matter!: Here’s what voters need to know
The Courts Matter Coalition of Nebraska is dedicated to educating, informing – and if necessary, taking action on the nominees to our federal courts.
September 7, 2022
How to ‘make a plan to vote’
Mind the calendar, plan for contingencies, and be specific.
August 29, 2022
Optimism: the great American force multiplier
Being optimistic does not mean shutting out bad news or being naive about present or emerging threats, which are very real. But it's an essential ingredient in building our shared democratic reality.
August 24, 2022
Meet Jason Ezell, Collective Impact Lincoln community organizer
The campaign veteran and graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan U. is Civic Nebraska's new community organizer for the Collective Impact Lincoln partnership.
August 24, 2022
Celebrate our Rising Stars on Oct. 28
We’re celebrating our after-school programs and all of the people who make them great with a free breakfast on Oct. 28 at Sherman Elementary School in Omaha.
August 22, 2022


After School Programs

  • Sherman Elementary School

    5618 N 14th Ave.
    Omaha, NE 68110

  • Lewis and Clark Middle School

    6901 Burt St.
    Omaha, NE 68132

  • Lothrop Magnet Elementary

    3300 N. 22nd St.
    Omaha, NE 68110

  • Campbell Elementary School

    2200 Dodge St.
    Lincoln, NE 68521

  • Lincoln High School

    2229 J St.
    Lincoln, NE 68510

  • Lincoln Northeast High School

    2635 N. 63rd St.
    Lincoln, NE 68507