My Nonprofit Reviews

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2 reviews

Review for Friends Of The Visual Arts, Salem, OR, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

I want to answer Playswithmudd. I am one of t he founders of the Willamette Art Center. At this time there is only one founder on a board of 7. Without the founders, there would not be a community place in Salem to "play with mud". Also, I have been one of over a dozen a volunteer monitors who keep the place open. Without the monitors there would be no Willamette Art Center. They answer the phone, sell gallery pieces, supplies, classes, memberships and studio passes, answer technical questions and clean up the mess every shift. For their work, they get a limited number of pieces fired. Their benefit to the center outweighs any compensation. There is only one "founder" on the list of monitors at this time. Monitorships rotate. Those who are interested can get on a list .
The Willamette Art Center is the one place I go where everyone is friendly to everyone else. It is the place I go to unwind. If you think the WAC is "cliquey" try volunteering. The Willamette Art Center is working hard to bring the community the benefit of pottery classes for the lowest cost possible. Another organization tried doing the same thing for Salem without volunteers. They closed after 5 years but still use the money making event that the Willamette Art Center's founders started. I challenge "Playswithmudd" to come to the WAC, go to board meetings and make a difference.
Unlike "playswithmudd" I refuse to hide behind anonymity. Cindy Nielsen

Role:  Volunteer

Review for Friends Of The Visual Arts, Salem, OR, USA

Rating: 4 stars  

The Willamette Art Center, the community ceramics arts center, run by the Friends of the Visual Arts is my home away from home. It offers a place where I can go to do creative work with like minded people and relieve the stress of daily life. I have been a caregiver for my elderly mother for 4 and half years, as long as the center has been in existence. WIthout the center, I would have burned out from the stress of watching my mother decline and having to become increasingly more responsible for her daily care . The center gives me a purpose and a way to express myself and the satisfaction that comes from working with my hands. The classes taught at the center offer a lively interchange of ideas and new techniques. The self actualization gained from my experience on the board of the Friends of the Visual Arts and as a student creating new works in pottery has relieved what would truly be a dreary existence.

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

I have been able to grow and develop my own creative abilities while watching others do the same. We give back a lot to the community including Family Clay Sundays which gives families an opportunity to do work creatively together. We organize and run the Artisans' Village at the Oregon State Fair show casing craftsmen at work and we throw more that 1000 Empty Bowls every year and sell them to benefit Marion Polk Food Share to feed the hungry.

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

I would actively recruit the arts business community to sit on the board of the Friends of the Visual Arts to explore better ways to serve the community. I would cross train our many volunteers in the duties of running a community ceramics studio.

Role:  Volunteer & I was a chater member of the Friends and helped build an art center that serves the community. I also monitor as a volunteer so that the center can stay open for the public to use during the day.