Demographically, Nevada County is a predominantly white community that lacks cultural diversity and has limited access to a broad range of voices. Nevada County’s oldest peoples are the Nisenan, and the Washoe Tribespeople. The Nisenan experienced a near-genocide during the Gold Rush era, and the remaining indigenous peoples in the area are often grossly overlooked. Today, Nevada City Rancheria is one of only three statewide tribes that remains unrecognized as a sovereign Nation. It is precisely for these reasons that The Center for the Arts — with our mission to promote a wide range of arts, cultures, and voices — is so important for our community. We exist not merely to entertain, but to provide our rural population with broader exposure to our history and the world while promoting and supporting artists who are too often marginalized.
The Center for the Arts is a cultural and educational organization that promotes and presents the literary, visual and performing arts for the enrichment of all. We believe that the arts can transform communities, open minds, and unite people through shared experiences of music, theatre, dance, performance, literature and visual art. By making these accessible to all — regardless of race, ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, socioeconomic and ability status, geography, citizenship status, or religion — and by bringing diverse voices and perspectives to our rural population, The Center stands to play a unique role in making our community more just, worldly, and socially engaged.
With the unanimous approval of the board of directors, The Center has made equity, inclusivity, and anti-racism top priorities through our programming and services, as well as internally through our work environment. We offer concerts, performances, and arts events year-round from a range of artists and cultures,– culminating with our renowned four day global celebration, “California WorldFest,” that showcases voices from across the globe.
In our daily operations, we expect all staff, volunteers, contractors, and board members to embrace the principles of equity, inclusivity and anti-racism and promote them in our work. In this way, we hope to model a culture of respect within our community.
Our goal is to celebrate cultural and artistic diversity. We place a special value on promoting traditional art created by indigenous cultures here in California and around the globe. The Center is also well aware of the racial injustices of both America’s past and present — and our team is committed to promoting and showcasing BBIPOC voices in our arts programming (while continually educating ourselves). We consistently provide a stage for artists from diverse backgrounds and cultures. To this end:
• The Center provides opportunities for remote and rural community voices to be heard.
• It provides accessible arts and cultural opportunities for everyone in our community.
• It provides a stage for community youths to learn about the power of the arts.
• It removes financial barriers to the arts by providing free arts activities for adults and children throughout the year.
In 2016, The Center created The Innovation Fund that is dedicated to promoting new works from diverse artists. These works challenge audiences to grow and learn new cultures, new ideas, and innovative practices in the arts.
In order for our team to thrive and grow, we are committed to promoting a work environment that fosters a culture of respect — especially for those who identify as Black, Brown, Indigenous, People of Color, women, staff members with disabilities and LGBTQ+. Within the foundation of The Center we promote justice, impartiality, and fairness within the procedures and processes for anyone working at The Center. This includes:
• Actively promoting a workplace culture of respect and awareness.
• Implementing anti-racism policies and accountability for volunteers, staff and board.
• Increasing diversity and inclusivity among the staff, board and volunteers.
We wish to make everyone who walks through the doors of The Center for the Arts feel comfortable and a sense of belonging. Therefore, we actively promote:
• Land acknowledgements and culturally knowledgeable practices.
• Community engagement.
• Audience development and engagement.
The Center aims to raise awareness and put an end to any workplace bias through:
• Making space for conversations about inclusivity and equity.
• Regular unconscious bias training for staff, board and volunteers.
• Acknowledgement and distribution of inclusivity statements among all staff, board and volunteers.