Yesterday, I had lunch with Monica Martinez, the ED of Homeless Services for Santa Cruz county. I was amazed not only by her energy and intelligence but by her simple, transformative goal: to end homelessness. As she said (and I'm paraphrasing):
We're not in the business of giving people food or a bed in perpetuity. We're in the business of finding a solution to this problem. Our goal is to tackle the root causes of this issue and provide people with services that help them transition out of homelessness. Sure, sometimes that involves a bed or a meal for awhile, but not forever.
- the Pittsburgh Children's Museum, whose vision is to make the Northside the best place to raise a child in the city by supporting diverse programs (not all museum-led) throughout the troubled neighborhood
- the American Visionary Art Museum, whose mission is simply to "expand the definition of a worthwhile life" by presenting and encouraging creativity in untraditional venues
- the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which has grown into a full-scale advocacy operation with a clear mission to save the oceans and inspire conservation
- the Denver Museum of Contemporary Art, which strives to be a cultural instigator that changes the way people throughout the city engage with each other