Monday, March 20, 2017

Meeting Space Celebrity Sighting: Natalie Portman

By Valerie Brown, Meeting Space Administrator

I met Natalie Portman in the Community First Foundation Meeting Space yesterday.

Natalie Portman (L) and Valerie Brown in
the Foundation's free Meeting Space
Okay, not the Natalie Portman of Star Wars, V for Vendetta and Black Swan. This Natalie Portman is a top-notch meeting facilitator who was working with a group advancing Mental Health First Aid in Jefferson County. Led by Jefferson Center for Mental Health, the group met in our largest meeting room to discuss training community members on how to identify persons who may benefit from mental health resources.

Jefferson Center for Mental Health is one of the dizzying array of nonprofits to have come through our doors since we opened the Meeting Space a year ago! February 2016 saw one meeting lasting four hours with six people. February 2017 saw 37 meetings for a total of 250 hours with 799 people through the door! In fact, in the first year we have hosted 269 meetings lasting a total of 1,822 hours and have seen 5,615 people through the door.

These people do the good work that makes Colorado a great place to live. They are teachers, artists, social workers, athletes, attorneys, nurses and motorcyclists. They feed the hungry, house the homeless, teach English to immigrants and staff food pantries.

A typical day might look like this:
  • Changemaker Room, capacity: 36. The Changemaker, our largest room, has a group of veterans, historians and artists of various disciplines who are planning a commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I. 
  • Innovator Room, capacity: 20. Meanwhile, in the Innovator, prospective adoptive parents are learning self-care techniques to get themselves through the difficult and lengthy adoption process and then the challenges of parenting troubled kids.
  • Combined Changemaker and Innovator Room, capacity 56. Later in the day, we will draw back the room divider for mental health professionals to teach a Mental Health First Aid class to a large group from the Visiting Nurse Association.
  • Connector Room, capacity 12. Storytellers in the Connector are planning events to pass down the stories that bind us together as Coloradans, Americans and humans.
  • Collaborator Room, capacity 8. In the Collaborator, school administrators are planning a school for teenagers who have been victims of human trafficking.

Me? I get to eavesdrop a little on these meetings, ensuring that technology is working, the water cooler is full and the rooms are comfortable.

It’s an honor to host such amazing nonprofits doing such good work in our state.

Plus, I got to meet Natalie Portman.

How to Schedule a Room for Your Next Meeting
The Community First Foundation Meeting Space offers rooms free of charge to nonprofit organizations. The collaborative space offers a variety of rooms and configurations that accommodate eight-56 people. Robust audio/visual equipment and a large catering kitchen help you put your best foot forward for trainings, meetings and retreats. Located in Olde Town Arvada, the space is just five minutes north of I-70 on Wadsworth and 15 minutes northwest of downtown Denver. Free parking on site. Visit our Meeting Space Webpage and schedule a meeting today!




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