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Just Desserts
Slingshot Art Gallery
Santa Barbara, CA
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Just Desserts
Over the past 13 years Just Communities has worked to ensure that Central Coast schools,organizations, and communities are places of opportunity, not places of limitation. Our organization works to facilitate dialogue, empower future leaders, and create social change with families, teachers, students and organizations.

Just Desserts is an opportunity for us to share what a thriving diverse community can look like; a celebration of the sweetness of diversity. During this event our guests get to know the folks behind the scenes that help make our programs so successful including our Board of Directors, Executive Director, wonderful staff and talented volunteers.

This celebration includes live music, delicious foods, beverages and local wines. We will also be honoring three local activists for their work in our community with the Amy Van Meter Courageous Conversations Award. This year we will be recognizing Dr. Ben Drati from the Santa Barbara Unified School District, Mitzy Perez and Mayra Perez.

Huge thank you to our generous sponsors!
Fielding Graduate Institute
The Fund for Santa Barbara
Alpha Resource Center
American Riviera Bank
McCune Foudnation
Trinity Episcopal Church
The Rivas Family
The French Family

Learn more about our award winners:

Dr. Ben Drati
As Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Education for the Santa Barbara Unified School District (SBUSD), Dr. Ben Drati has been a fearless and consistent advocate for improving outcomes for students by addressing inequities in education and ensuring all students succeed. Charged by Superintendent Dave Cash with operationalizing the District's vision of a culturally proficient District in which all children succeed at the highest levels Dr. Drati has been a role model, change agent, and leader who continuously engages in and leads courageous conversations about the realities of educational opportunity and a believe entire gaps and their solutions.

Mitzy Pérez
Mitzy has been an active Just Communities youth leader since she first participated in our CommUnity Leadership Institute (CLI) in 2012.Since then Mitzy has participated in our Talking in Class program and while as a student at Dos Pueblos High School has advocated for ways to make her school more equitable for all her peers. She has also taken important roles in staffing Just Communities programs, having been a Youth Ally at CLI, in which Mitzy was critical in creating safe spaces for dialogue, reflection, and community building for the students who participated. Mitzy is a visionary student, she does not shy away from speaking her mind while still supportive of others in their journey towards social justice.

Mayra Pérez
Mayra Pérez said she first listened to her own voice after participating in our program Parent Involvement through Dialogue and Action (PIDA). She learned that she needed to speak up in order to start the necessary conversations within her own family, her community and the schools where her children attended. She is a mother who is always present at the parent events at all her children's schools. She is there advocating for the students as well as sharing information with parents, raising pressing questions to administrators and teachers and supporting other parent's voices.


Slingshot Art Gallery (View)
220 W. Canon Perdido St.
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
United States


Other > Fundraisers

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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