The Village, the private events space at 969 Market St., has something almost every nonprofit organization in the city needs: space. One year after the company’s launch, its nonprofit arm, The Village Impacts, is preparing to share The Village’s 17,000 square feet with community organizations that need it.
Uday Joshi, the director of The Village Impacts, is a fellow at The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts and a former commissioner of cultural affairs for the City of Oakland. He’s focused his career on the juxtaposition of the arts and social action, and what the two mean for young people, he said.
He’s known Jonathan Rowe, founder of The Village and Madrone Studios, for the past 15 years, he said. So when Rowe began building The Village, which is housed in a quickly gentrifying area just outside of one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods, he reached out to Joshi regarding the space’s potential as a community arts center, when not in use for corporate clients.
After many conversations, they decided to use the space to foster creative cultures, communities and collaborations. Their mission is “purposely vague,” Joshi said, because they’re still inventing the organization and surveying the community’s nonprofits and arts organizations to identify their most pressing needs.
However, they don’t need any surveys to tell them that their number-one asset is their space. The innovative technologies Madrone Studios uses to help its corporate clients tell their stories could also be gamechangers for local nonprofits. “Media is a powerful tool, and it can be used to impact the world in a way that’s positive,” Joshi said.
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