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20036    Awardees 2002     Ten dedicated leaders from Alameda’s diverse West     End received Koshland Civic Unity Awards ...
Dear Friends,                                                                                                            2...
In 1982, The San Francisco Foundation                                     established The Daniel E. Koshland Civic Unity  ...
a conversation     with Arnold Perkins     KOSHLAND PROGRAM DIRECTOR, 1988 – 1992; KOSHLAND COMMITTEE MEMBER, 1996 – PRESE...
I give a talk where I begin with the universe and I        balance, and it will go up and down until it finds         says...
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San Francisco Foundation - Koshland Connect

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San Francisco Foundation - Koshland Connect

  1. 1. 20036 Awardees 2002 Ten dedicated leaders from Alameda’s diverse West End received Koshland Civic Unity Awards in 2002.14 Mothers Against Murder and Assault Amidst Oakland’s murder epidemic, a group of brave women are reaching out to help incarcerated youth.16 Interview: Arnold Perkins Alameda County’s Director of Public Health, a former Koshland Program director, talks about the importance of community.3 about the koshland program5 20th anniversary celebration12 neighborhoods on the move18 awardees in the news19 new koshland web pages20 resources22 koshland committee + staff
  2. 2. Dear Friends, 2002 We are proud to showcase once again the exceptional Koshland awardees West Alameda and their efforts to build civic unity in Bay Area neighborhoods. alameda koshland neighborhoods In September 2002, the Koshland Program marked its 20th year of working 2001 collaboratively and supportively with neighborhoods to improve the quality South of Market san francisco of life in the Bay Area. Our 20th anniversary event was a forum to celebrate the many factors that build a strong community, such as involved residents, strong families, interracial understanding, and a collective appreciation 2000 of multicultural diversity. Canal san rafael This newsletter features updates on the exciting work of residents and service providers in the West End neighborhood of the City of Alameda, the 1999 soma neighborhood of San Francisco, the Canal neighborhood of San Rafael, the Bayshore and Crocker neighborhoods of Daly City, and four Bayshore · Crocker daly city neighborhoods in Pittsburg. This year we are looking forward to working with leaders in the 1998 Monument Corridor neighborhood of Concord. Our 12 newest awardees will West Boulevard · El Pueblo · be honored in a ceremony on May 27, 2003. Parkside · Downtown pittsburg We want to express our appreciation to the Koshland Committee and staff for their support and commitment and, most of all, to the neighborhood 1997 residents who continue to inspire our work. San Antonio oakland Fondly, 1996 Chinatown san francisco 1995 Retha Robinson Michael Omi koshland program director koshland committee chair Oceanview · Merced · Ingleside san francisco 1992 Central and North Richmond richmond 1991 Mission san francisco Retha Robinson koshland program director 1990 Susan Kleinman editor West Oakland oakland Bahati Banks, Amy Conley, Charles Fields, Susan Kleinman Tenderloin contributors san francisco Talya Gould, Rebecca Holder, Anna Marie Tutera 1989 editorial assistants Elmhurst Amici Design oakland design Kathy Sloane 1985 photography Visitacion Valley Koshland Connect, 2003 san francisco Published annually by The San Francisco Foundation The San Francisco Foundation 1984 225 Bush Street, Suite 500 San Francisco, CA 94104-4224 Potrero Hill san francisco tel: 415.733.8561 fax: 415.733.2785 email: rsa@sff.org 1983 Visit us online at www.sff.org/koshland Western Addition san francisco2
  3. 3. In 1982, The San Francisco Foundation established The Daniel E. Koshland Civic Unity Awards in honor of one of its founders and major benefactors. He built a reputation for practical, bold, and even riskycurrent neighborhoodsrepresenting all 5 counties servedby the san francisco foundation philanthropy in his efforts to improve the quality of life for all Bay Area residents. Daniel Koshland devoted his energy and resources toward alleviating injustices and discrimination. His focus was on bringing together leaders from neighborhoods, the private sector, government, and philanthropy to solve community problems. The Koshland Program is administered by The San Francisco Foundation’s Koshland Committee, which is comprised of Koshland family members and local leaders who are committed to improving the quality of life in the Bay Area. In the spirit of Daniel Koshlands life and work, the Koshland Civic Unity Awards recognize Bay Area grassroots risk-takers—those social innovators of bold spirit who accept the most stubborn neighborhood problems as a personal challenge and who work collaboratively to overcome them. continued 8 3
  4. 4. a conversation with Arnold Perkins KOSHLAND PROGRAM DIRECTOR, 1988 – 1992; KOSHLAND COMMITTEE MEMBER, 1996 – PRESENT interview with a koshland committee member BB: How did your upbringing contribute to your passion for community building? Arnold Perkins is the director of the Alameda County Public Health Department, providing leadership and direction for administrative, AP: I was raised in Miami, Florida in a traditional African way, in the program, and policy activities. He brings diverse experience and a deep sense that whatever was done by the families was collective. My father, for example, built a number of houses with his friends. commitment to building and maintaining the spirit of community to his They used to drill wells by hand collectively, buy food together, or current position. Currently, Arnold is leading the department through a go down to the banana boat and get bananas collectively. So early major organizational shift that reflects a broad vision of public health on I understood the importance of communing with others, which is what community is, and the unity that it took to accomplish and a community development orientation. His colorful background things. includes roles as a high school teacher, counselor, and principal; psy- Living in an environment that has been heavily influenced by tra- chology technician; director of a California Youth Authority halfway ditional European values, specifically the value placed on inde- house; faculty member at California State University at Hayward and at pendence and the “I can do it myself ” mentality, I have had to struggle to help folks understand that we have to operate collec- Antioch College; developer of the first county-wide homeless programs tively. It needs to be “our program” and not just “my program.” for Alameda County; multicultural fellow and director of the Koshland Program at The San Francisco Foundation; and restaurant owner and BB: How has your experience wearing various hats (teacher, educator, business owner, and grantmaker) molded your operator. Arnold is an experienced speaker and facilitator, especially in philosophy about community? the areas of organizational change, team building, creative leadership, AP: My philosophy comes from my elders and from mentors that community development, and group dynamics. Married with four sons, I have known and worked with. I have always been taught the Arnold is an avid traveler, reader, and sportsman and enjoys gardening, importance of community. My parents instilled in me not to think raising bees, and growing orchids. Arnold spoke with Bahati Banks, a of myself as a “minority.” “Minor” is a code word meaning “unim- portant.” I was raised in an environment where I didn’t know how multicultural fellow with The San Francisco Foundation, about his expe- to sing the Star Spangled Banner until I came to California. All riences and his philosophy of community building. I knew growing up was [the Negro National Anthem], “Lift every voice and sing, ’til earth and heaven ring.” On the weekends I would hear [African American musicians and activists such as] Marian Anderson, Roland Hayes, and Paul Robeson. It was always all about communities. That has always been an integral part of me. I feel like I was born with a sense of community. I don’t get caught up in the argument about, “Well, you’re not from the community!” All of us are from a community and it all counts. You don’t have to live in West Oakland to have a sense of what people there experi- ence; but at the same time you certainly can’t go into West Oakland and tell people what to do. continued816
  5. 5. I give a talk where I begin with the universe and I balance, and it will go up and down until it finds says, “I discover your car.” In some ways we havebring it all the way down to the individual. If you look homeostasis. A lot of our communities, for various discovered, from an organizational perspective,at us from 5,000 feet in the air, we look very much reasons such as education, economics, policing, or what people in the community already knew. I thinklike a cell does. If you’re walking down a corridor on lack of health access, are like mobiles out of kilter. what Koshland does is work with the people in theSan Francisco’s Market Street, it looks just like cells Our goal is to create the homeostasis within a com- community to celebrate their genius, their great-in the body. When we look at ourselves in a much munity so the community can operate, because most ness, their leadership. It also reinforces for the com-broader context, we’re part of an organism, and we communities already have what they need. Some munity that you folks have a lot going on; it’s right inall affect one another. Even me [breath sound] blow- communities don’t have grocery stores or banks, but, your midst. What we want to do is help you harnessing on you, you feel my presence, and so we all have with organized pressure, residents could bring those the wisdom that you already have.this energy that we exchange back and forth. My institutions into the community. I encourage commu-experience has taught me about the importance of nities to create their own institutions. Omowale Satterwhite, who facilitates the initialour interconnectedness. Koshland neighborhood meetings, usually goes People in the community are so wonderful. Look at around the room and asks, “How many years haveBB: How has your background in promoting health the Koshland Program. Folks just want attention you been involved with service in this community?”and wellness influenced your work around commu- paid to them and they want us to listen to what they He points out that the total number of years in thenity building? have to say. Many communities are disenfranchised room could be anywhere from 500 to 1,000. That’s a because of the lack of access to capital and employ- significant amount of knowledge. The KoshlandAP: I didn’t come to this job in the traditional way, ment. We have the ability to assist them with organ- Program assists people in tapping into thatthrough the Masters in Public Health track. I came izing around issues so that the community feels knowledge in a more organized fashion, helpingfrom a community wellness perspective and a belief whole and empowered. them develop a community plan. If you don’t havethat communities are interrelated, and I learned a plan, then any path will get you there becauseabout health later on. BB: How has the Koshland Program transformed the you don’t know where you’re going. But, if you way in which communities view their homegrown have someone to work with you and organize andI reorganized the department from being a down- leaders? harness the energy, then you can do incredibletown operation, making the people come to us, to a things. It doesn’t have to be a lot of people, just acommunity-based operation. My philosophy is that AP: I don’t know if it has transformed them as much few people who organize can make a difference.I’m employed by the residents of Alameda County, as recognized that those leaders exist and that they Koshland has helped people to realize the geniusand the best way to serve them is to go where they have been there for many years. It’s like if I’m driving within their communities.live. We now have ten community health teams in down the street and Columbus sees my car andten different neighborhoods. I would like to have 20or 30 more teams, and the teams don’t have to focussolely on public health. They need to be a part of alarger structure, because if a team is only workingon public health, then we are not doing our jobs.BB: Can you tell me more about the communityhealth teams?AP: The teams are made up of community healthoutreach workers, nurses, and clerical support with-in these various communities. We selected twoneighborhoods in each supervisory district inAlameda County. The teams are there to teach thecommunity and also to learn from the community. Inorder to do our job well, we must build capacity,which means we transfer the skills that we havewithin the community and we also have the commu-nity skills transferred to us.It’s very much like raising bees. Bees go out and pol-linate. Our community health teams should be goinginto the community to pollinate and then setting upstructures so the community does the work on theirown. When we do research, it has to be participato-ry, so that the community learns the research meth-ods that we have. The goal is to create healthy orwell communities. People in our communities arediseased, and we have communities that are “dis-eased,” and part of our goal is to create environ-ments where people are not “dis-eased,” but peopleare “at ease.” When people feel well, they feel likethey are in homeostasis.When you look at a mobile, it goes around in bal-ance, and then sometimes the mobile gets out of 17

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