Mission Gold was created in the hope of inspiring people to pay attention to what's unfolding on the streets around them; to shine a light on the livelihoods of those too often overlooked, and reconsider what is classified as trash and what is seen as treasure.
Most importantly, Mission Gold wants people to realize that curiosity and compassion are the currencies that count most.
Issue 001 - Money: Haircuts, Beer Cans & Rockstar Bartering explores the world of street recycling, retailing and other exotic forms of earning a dollar. If necessity is the mother of invention, this is the 24 carat motherlode.
To launch Issue 001, 300 copies will be donated and distributed with the Coalition on Homelessness’ Street Sheet. Mission Gold will be sold by homeless people who keep 100% of the money. The entrepreneurial spirit of the Street Sheet vendors makes them the perfect salespeople for Mission Gold.
Nick Marzano is the chief dumpster diver, shaman whisperer, shadow economist, writer, photographer and founder of Mission Gold. He spent two years wandering the streets of the Mission - photographing and interviewing the individuals he encountered and collecting the raw material found in Mission Gold.
As a Creative Director working in tech, Nick is challenging Silicon Valley’s assumptions about entrepreneurship.
"I moved from Australia to San Francisco four years ago and found an apartment at 16th and South Van Ness," Marzano said. "Every morning, I watched tech employees queue up to board shuttle buses in front of the gas station on the corner, the same place where people living on the streets of the Mission hung out at all hours of the night and day. The juxtaposition was striking. I had to start documenting it.”
Nick acknowledges that technology dramatically improves lives, yet believes if the tech community invested more time ‘interfacing’ with street-level entrepreneurs in their own neighborhoods - it could create the dialogue, data, and disruptive thinking that might help reduce the gap of the haves and the have-nots in San Francisco.
A NON-PROFIT PROJECT
All profits from the sale of Mission Gold Issues 001-004 will go to Tipping Point Community. Tipping Point fights poverty in the Bay Area for the 1.3 million people too poor to meet their basic needs. Since 2005, Tipping Point has raised more than $150 million to educate, employ, house and support low-income individuals and families in the Bay Area.
GET MISSION GOLD
Issue 001 - Money: Haircuts, Beer Cans & Rockstar Bartering is available for online purchase here , through San Francisco Street Sheet vendors and in-store at Pens & Needles bookshop 1773 Valencia Street.