Bread and Roses Benefit Agency

Rating: 4.88 stars   24 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture, Children & Youth, Human Services

Location: 233 Tamalpais Dr Ste 100 Corte Madera CA 94925 USA

Mission: Increasing access to the arts for members of the public who are ill, institutionalized, incarcerated or impoverished is the special focus of Bread & Roses.Founded in 1974 by singer/songwriter Mimi Fariña, Bread & Roses has worked for more than three decades at the crossroads of arts and social services to enable isolated and institutionalized individuals to have the unique, restorative experience of being lifted beyond oneself and one?s current circumstances that is possible through live music and performing art.

2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

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Rating: 5 stars  

14 people found this review helpful

Bread and Roses consistently reaches out to those people who are out of the mainstream due to physical, financial or other limitations. These folks especially need the magic that music provides in healing the soul. I witnessed this magic while working at a women's shelter in San Francisco. Bread and Roses always kept us in their schedule without our even having to ask. What a blessing to the community they are!

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The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

excellent

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach more people.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2007-8-01

Rating: 5 stars  

13 people found this review helpful

After playing host at a skilled nursing home and introducing a young vocalist, i.e., another Bread & Roses volunteer, I sat back and listened to her singing old standards of the 40's, songs of love and love lost. Sitting beside me was a petite woman, her white hair in a bun, tapper her toes in a rhythm to the music, and a bright smile that lasted during the entire performance. After the show I hesitantly asked her the reason for her happy smile and far away look. She turned to me and said, "I remember." I wasn't about to ask anything more but I sensed that the romantic songs brought back wonderful memories of times long past. And I was happy that I, and that wonderful vocalist gave that lovely lady a few moments of happiness. People ask why I continue hosting after 15 years, and I usually say that "life has been good to me and this is a way I can give back." But the greater truth is that it is a privilege to be a small part of an organization that brings smiles and laughter to thousands of the young and old, whom Bread & Roses gladly serve.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

every time I host an event I see the results of all the work that goes into making sure the event goes smoothly which is done by the Bread & Roses staff for the enjoyment of the audience.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

n/a

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

I get to experience quality entertainment as well!

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

In the 15 years I've been there the staff has been extraordinarily flexible and sensitive to the volunteers and to each other - always willing to go the extra mile to work things out.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand its outreach to serve the community even greater and compensate the employees at an level commensurate of their talents.

Ways to make it better...

I have been associated with a number of volunteer organizations and I find Bread & Roses to be extremely resourceful and effective which is not necessarily true of all nonprofits.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Trying to do all they do with the limited funds they have.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Rating: 5 stars  

11 people found this review helpful

I have had the magnificent good fortune to volunteer for many B&R events, over the last 10 years or so. That the organization still does what it does best, and that they do more of it, every year, is a success story worthy of fulsome praise and steadfast support.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

extend its services, beyond the immediate SF Bay Area. A common refrain, heard around B&R's table at the Kate Wolf Festival last year, was "Why can't Bread & Roses come to Mendocino/Gold Country/Far East Bay/Santa Cruz?" Why, indeed?

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-8-01

Rating: 5 stars  

14 people found this review helpful

Bread & Roses provides what Huey Lewis calls a "twofer." The people it serves are moved and healed by the performers. But it works both ways, because the performers get a boost from the kind of audiences they rarely play for.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

serve a whole lot more audiences in need.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

Rating: 5 stars  

11 people found this review helpful

I'm a performer affiliated with Bread and Roses. Their screening process is rigorous and thorough. I needed to send them video links and professional references before they'd allow me to perform. That keeps the quality high. Not just anyone gets to entertain. There is a high level of professionalism. There is always and emcee who introduces us and they bring a p.a. system. I gear up for the performances and always feel satisfied that I could share my talents with the older people we entertain. We all realize we ate there to make a difference in their day.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing the smiling faces of people in the audience.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

always upbeat and committed to doing a great job for those less fortunate.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach even more people and bring more joy into their lives.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-9-01

Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

The acoustic/folk band, Three At Last has joined with Bread & Roses as a volunteer to provide music. We are new to their organization, but we feel as though we are their favorite band. EVERY contact with their staff, producers, engineers, has been completely professional, supportive and helpful. If every company/organization did business like Bread & Roses, the world would be a better place. We are proud to be associated, profoundly grateful for their mission. JUST THE BEST!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Correspondence to their main office, and also with their producer.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Thoughtful, competent, efficient, responsive, true to their word.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Pay it's volunteers.

Ways to make it better...

Our experience has been amazing.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Rating: 5 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

I've volunteered as a host for B&R's musical performances for a year now, and never fail to be impressed with the power of music to lift the souls of people in tough situations. Nursing homes, lock-down psych wards, drug rehab homes, juvenile hall, and other isolated populations come to life when great performers sing and play their musical hearts out for them. Toes start tapping in wheelchairs, cynical drug users start swaying to the beat and singing along, and even non-responsive psych patients lean forward towards the performers. Before you know it, souls that have been heavy are suddenly lighter and feeling joyful. As one drug rehab dweller said - "For a few minutes there, I was free!" What a gift B&R brings to people.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

how cynical and jaded men in drug rehab units eventually start singing along and clapping with performers mid-way through a show - suddenly they are emotionally open and enjoying themselves.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Open magnet offices in different towns within this geographical area and better serve populations that need them - but right now are too great a distance (and bridge and gas costs) for volunteers to make.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-12-01

Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

Performing music for seniors who are in residential or convalescent facilities brings so much joy to them and to me as they sing along, tap their feet, recall the tunes from their past, and express delight in multiple ways.

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If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

superlative and devoted.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

lift the spirits of the elderly, the confined and those who are ill with greater regularity, since all the performers are volunteers and the staff is limited.

Ways to make it better...

there was a larger staff.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-12-01

Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

I volunteer for bread and roses as a performer. I've seen first hand the positive effect this wonderful organization makes to the daily lives of the people they serve. Performing for bread and roses functions reminds me of the REAL purpose and reason the gift of music is so special. The simple vibration of wood,string,flesh and air brings people together in a moment like nothing else. its my pleasure and privelege to participate with bread and roses in any capacity. they do wonderful work and the staff are incredibly nice talented and dedicated to their cause

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

my interactions with the clients and with the organization its self.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

professional ,dedicated, human. wonderful tireless.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

deliver live art fresh daily to everyone

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2006-1-01

Rating: 5 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

I have volunteered as a performer for Bread and Roses since 2004. They enable performers to bring music and entertainment to those who are institutionalized, in transition, unwell, unsure, unhappy, in need or alone. I have witnessed the power of music to lift the spirits. I have felt a room full of people become happy, start to smile, feel connected, laugh and sing. I have felt the energy change to positive energy. I have met people I would never cross paths with in my daily life; made new friends; developed relationships and felt a room full of people, including myself, feel worthy and acknowledged. The staff of Bread and Roses treat everyone with respect, grace and courtesy. They are reliable, communicative, caring and enthusiastic.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

hospitals, women's refuges, homeless shelters, prison, drug and alcohol rehabilitation center.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The bonding together of people from all walks of life via music.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Kind, friendly, efficient, reliable, communicative, caring and respectful.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Go global! There are people in need of music and community all over the world. And there are artists willing to volunteer.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-9-01

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