The Ventura College Foundation Marketplace, which operates every Saturday and Sunday on the Ventura College campus, is closed until further notice. Ventura College is following the March 19 COVID-19 “Shelter In Place” executive order from California Governor Gavin Newsom so classes and public activities are no longer being held on campus.
“We know that the prolonged closure will impact many in the community who rely on the Marketplace for their fresh produce, pre-packed food and other essential items,” says Anne Paul King, executive director of the Ventura College Foundation. “For our vendors, the Marketplace is a major source of revenue. It’s a difficult time and our hearts go out to those who are affected.”
The Marketplace draws about 2,000 visitors each weekend with 200 vendors on Saturday and 300 vendors on Sunday.
“Our Foundation Board of Directors and staff are working hard behind-the-scenes so that when we are given permission, we will be ready to reopen the Marketplace as quickly as possible,” says King.
The Ventura College Foundation Marketplace has hosted vendors and patrons for over three decades and is a link between the college and the community. The Marketplace’s weekly booth space rental income supports 50 percent of the foundation’s budget including 100 percent of the organization’s operating budget. It is essential in ensuring the foundation’s ability to deliver philanthropic support to students and the college.
Last year because of the Marketplace, the organization was able to support more than 5,800 students last year covering all education fees through the VC Promise (1,183 first-year and 363 second-year students), textbook support (1,565 served through semester lending library and 2,843 served through the resource library) and scholarship support (240 students served and 463 scholarships awarded).