• The Berkeley Reach

    Berkeley Rationalist and Effective Altruism Community Hub

  • What is it?

    The Berkeley REACH is a gathering place which offers

    Community Events

    A default place to host

    The REACH is available to host private and community-wide events. No need to do an extensive site search or frantically clean your house before and after an event.

    Note: You will need to either provide your own disposable plates, cups, flatware, snacks, etc, or pay to use the ones stocked by the center.

    See the Calendar for upcoming events and to check for availalbility.

    Coworking

    A place to work on weekdays

    There are couches, chairs, and tables in the main room, as well as a quieter side room that can be used for coworking during the day. When there's enough interest, we do exercise pomodoros (that is, we do focused work for 25 minutes, followed by 5 minutes of chatting and group exercise, with occasional longer breaks).

    Depending on how the Patreon to fund the space ends up going, there may or may not be a sliding scale suggested donation for coworking.

    Guest rooms

    A place to stay short-term

    Rooms and couches available for visiting guests, new folks looking for permanent housing, etc.

     

    See guest room availability here.

    Ongoing Stuff swap

    A place to give and take small items

    Bring things you don't want/need anymore but which other people might want, and/or take things that you'd make good use of:

    • Clothing (in good condition)
    • Books
    • Board Games
    • Chairs
    • Small furniture (check before bringing anything bigger than a nightstand)
    Note: all items should be marked with the date of donation so that they can be taken to be donated to a thrift store if not taken after a few months.

    Lending Libraries

    A place to keep infrequently used items

    The REACH is a great place to bring books, tools, board games, comics, DVDs, etc. that you aren't likely to need in the next few months and don't mind other people using -- we'll keep track of who has them on loan and make sure that you have first priority if/when you want them back.

     

    These will be stored separately from the stuff swap items! You can also give instructions for items to remain at the REACH and not be taken home.

    Private Event Venue

    A place to hold occasional private events

    Most events at the REACH should be open to the community, but if you have a private event you want to throw and don't have a venue (e.g. limited guest list dinner party, private movie viewing, etc.), you can pay to reserve the space based on a sliding scale which will vary depending on circumstances.

    If you're looking for private rooms for 1:1 sessions for career coaching, counseling, massage, etc. let me know and we can talk about availability and pricing.

     

    Email to inquire about reserving space. Must not conflict with any events already on the calendar (see bottom of this page).

    Kid-friendly activities

    A place for rationalist and EA families

    More folks in our community are starting to have kids, so we need more kid-friendly spaces and activities!

    Not every event will be kid friendly, but events should be as inclusive as possible after accounting for competing access needs (e.g. a circling event requires focus and many people have difficulty focusing with the sound of children playing in the background).

    There will also be some kid-targeted activities like kid-friendly crafts, reading aloud from kid-friendly books, etc, which adults are also welcome to join if they are ok with going at kid pace :)

    Music Jam Sessions

    A place to practice music, or give/take lessons

    There is a piano in the main space, which can be reserved for practice sessions or giving lessons (pending approval of current guests).

    You are also welcome to set up jam sessions and bring other instruments (again, subject to approval of guests).

    In either case, REACH out to theberkeleyreach@gmail.com to schedule!

    Mediation Sessions

    A place to work through tricky issues

    Last fall, Sarah took a class with SEEDS where she learned a form of mediation. This style of mediation requires all parties to voluntarily choose to participate.

    This style of mediation is not about deciding who is "right" or "wrong" or what outcome is most "fair" -- it is about coming to a solution that is mutually agreeable to all involved parties. It is also *not* the mediator's job to come up with solutions, though they may suggest options during the brainstorming session.

     

    General form of a mediation session:

    • With everyone in the same room, the mediator(s) talk(s) to each disputant in turn, asking for their take on the situation (the usual prompt is "What brings you here today, in your perspective?")
      • There may be a few rounds of going back to each disputant until the all the relevant info is on the table.
      • During this portion, everyone is asked to avoid interruptions and speak only when it is their turn, possible non-verbally indicating wanting to address a point as it comes up.
      • Throughout this process, the mediator(s) acknowledge and reflect each nugget of info as it comes out.
    • After most of the relevant info has been shared, the disputants are encouraged to start directly responding to one another, again reflecting and summarizing what they heard the other party say.
    • At this point, if it seems agreeable to everyone, the group may begin brainstorming and writing down possible solutions.
    • Another option is to close the session and agree to meet again (or not), depending on timing. 
    • Sessions are capped at 3 hours, and any participant can request to stop or pause at any time.
    REACH out to Sarah at theberkeleyreach@gmail.com with "Mediation" in the subject to discuss scheduling a session. No need to state the nature of the conflict in the initial request.

    These sessions are free, and there is a network of other folks who took the same class who are interested in providing free mediation services as well, so if you'd prefer someone outside the community, or prefer having multiple mediators, that can be arranged.
  • Where is it?

    The Berkeley Reach is located on the ground floor of 3045 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, 94705. It is currently still marked as Cafe La Renaissance, new signage coming soon!

    The upper two floors are an EA/rationalist group house called Event Horizon. Please only enter the upstairs unit or gated back yard if you are explicitly invited/taken along by a resident of EH.

    How can I get involved or help?

    There are a few way to be involved with the REACH

    • Show up to community events!
    • Like or follow the FB page
    • Show up to cowork during the day
    • Volunteer to present at or run a session of an EA meetup
    • Host events for the community!
    • Volunteer to help at events, or with maintaining the space
    • Financial support:
    If you are interested in any of the above but aren't sure how to go about them, please contact theberkeleyreach@gmail.com for more info!
  • REACH Calendar

    See general event calendar to also see events not held at the REACH.