The Challenge of Volunteerism: SFV Arts Council

“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.” – Henry Ford

I have never been the one to work for free. Volunteerism was not a part of my English vocabulary until I found the right cause. 

I consider myself to be a highly refined person.  My parents have done everything they possibly could to ensure that I grew up to be a well-rounded person.  Thus, not only have I experienced manual labor (as mentioned in one of the previous posts), but I was also exposed to many highly aesthetic things – literally every visual and performing form of art you can think of. Despite the fact that I dreaded the piano lessons, you do not have to ask me twice to go to a museum. I love all music and arts in general.

My love for all things “culture” is the reason why I joined the San Fernando Valley Arts Council group.  My first contribution was the June newsletter that just went out to all subscribers. I have to tell you that after DOS this Constant Contact is probably the most non-user-friendly application I have used.

Currently, SFV Arts Council does require a lot of help – they do not even have a fully functional website that I can refer you to and their Facebook page only has two entries.  However, the mission is noble –  “to support and promote the appreciation and growth of culture and the arts in the Valley by making the arts readily available to residents of all economic backgrounds”.

I believe that every intelligent person should care about their community. I mean every time I am walking around my hood I get the itch to pick up litter off the sidewalks (and not only because I believe in recycling).  However, the primary reason that I joined this group is the fact that I would like for everyone to have access to all the beauty that I did when I was growing up. I believe that it is necessary for a human beings to be exposed to art just be human.  And the primary concern is, of course, about the children in underprivileged families. It is understandable that if the parent is struggling to put food on the table, his child’s aesthetic development is not going to be on his radar at all. It breaks my heart knowing that there are children that will grow up without art in their lives. Children are our future. I believe that art helps us ensure that they grow up productive and contributing members of the society.

Since I am so new to this, I would appreciate any advice on how to bring the arts to the larger community.  How does the Arts Council reach beyond the middle class, drill down to the masses, and ensure that our future is a little brighter? We welcome all ideas and suggestions. Thank you.

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