EQUITY & ACCESS
NEW: COMMUNITY AGREEMENTS
Please click the link above to review our Community Agreements. Thank you for helping make SADC a welcoming place for all.
EQUITY & ACCESS
This page is designed to transparently share information with the public about Shawl-Anderson Dance Center’s work around equity and access related to race, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability, national origin, age, religion, economic status and more. We welcome your feedback and want to be in dialogue with you. Please reach out to us at email@example.com to connect and communicate or find contact information for specific staff members or the board here.
HISTORY & CONTEXT
Shawl-Anderson Dance Center (SADC) is one of the oldest community arts organizations in the Bay Area. It was co-founded in 1958 by Frank Shawl and Victor Anderson. From the beginning the ethos of SADC was about being warm, welcoming and inclusive. However, the organization historically did not foster open conversations about race, gender identity, sexual orientation and more. We recognize that this way of being was and is antithetical to the organization’s values and desire to make space for everyone to feel welcome, fully seen and able to show up as their whole selves in the process of dancing, teaching, learning and creating.
With the passing of the founders in 2017 and 2019, SADC has fully transitioned from a co-founder led to a community-led organization. In the past several years, we have started to openly discuss identity and how it is integral to dance education, art making, choreography, performance and service as a community arts organization. Some examples of how this exploration has brought about change include: the founding our annual Queering Dance Festival; inclusion of a gender neutral restroom; revamping of the Artist in Residence program and panel process to increase equitable access; race equity work launched in 2020 (see more below); and commitments from our leadership as shared below to ensure that structures, systems, policies, procedures and programming continue to evolve to support increased equity, access and inclusion over time.
The information here addresses work started by SADC in 2020 regarding race equity specifically. The commitments from leadership address our aims regarding equity overall. These plans will be supplemented with an internal plan that is part of a larger strategic plan established in 2021. We commit to updating the public by sharing information on a regular basis on this page and welcome your feedback.
RECENT WORK 2023
This year the Center has worked to expand our accessibility and programming. Our Rental Program now includes not only artist rehearsal space but also classes led by local independent teaching artists and companies. We are home to CubaCaribe, Salimpour Belly Dance, Bollywood, Latin Fusion, Bhangra, and Heels classes and workshops. Our in-house programming has also expanded to include Belly Dance, Integral Dance, Ballet Folklorico, Adult Hip-Hop, Filipino Folk, and Afro Dance Workout.
In alignment with the goal of having a fully accessible space, the biggest change 2023 provided was an historic expansion! We are now in partnership with BANDALOOP, a vertical dance company based in West Oakland. Currently offering both adult and youth classes weekly in a (need the number) square foot space, this fully accessible location will provide SADC with the opportunity to offer residencies and classes to everybody regardless of mobility (differences?).
On the interpersonal front, SADC directors have completed CompassPoint trainings to work on leadership skills, understanding power dynamics, and giving and receiving feedback all through a social justice lensing. Center-wide, the faculty and staff have begun embodiment training with Liv Schaffer focusing on intergenerational dynamics in the workplace and at SADC specifically.
The Board of Directors is a key component in any nonprofit, and we are grateful for the dedicated community members who donate many hours a year to serve and support the organization. SADC is working with consultant Elba Morales this year to look at our board structure, common values, and recruitment process.
The Center is very close to solidifying a stated Land Acknowledgement that will be publicized along with a financial commitment to a local indigenous run organization. Pending BOD approval the goal is to complete this process by November 17 to honor Native American Heritage Month.