Groundwork Denver is leading a comprehensive watershed planning effort for Lower Bear Creek. Bear Creek is a major tributary of the South Platte River that flows from its headwaters on Mount Evans about 42 miles until it meets the South Platte in Sheridan. Bear Creek offers a great recreational resource to neighborhoods throughout the Denver-metro area, with extensive parks, natural areas and a paved multi-use path. Unfortunately, Lower Bear Creek is considered “impaired” for recreational use due to E.coli contamination. It is also threatened by trash, oil and grease, and nutrient pollution.
Groundwork Denver’s Green Team youth, who volunteer at Rocky Mountain National Park regularly, were highlighted in a video by Rocky Mountain National Park – many of the youth, GW Denver’s Youth Program director Shane Wright, and RMNP Park Rangers are interviewed here. Check it out!
Groundwork Elizabeth received a grant of $20,000 from PSE&G to support the second phase of the Elizabeth River Trail – to expand it further. Please read more about the Elizabeth River Trail, plans for expanding it, Groundwork Elizabeth and the City’s role in its evolution, covered in the local news here.
Groundwork Portland has been invited to make a presentation on their Environmental Justice work in Oregon at an EPA-hosted event, along with a few other community organizations. The presentations will be followed by an open conversation with OEJ Director Matt Tejada and Senior EJ Adviser, Lisa Garcia. Groundwork Portland will be focusing on its work with the Portland Harbor Community Coalition. Congratulations to Groundwork Portland!
Groundwork Richmond and local partners participate in the greening of the City of Richmond last Fall – check out this cool video documenting Arbor Day at Lucas Park!
And please take a moment to check out the City of Richmond’s Urban Greening Program – a program that Groundwork Richmond (GWR) is playing an important part in. GWR is helping build the City’s tree canopy by involving and coordinating residents and youth in the planting of trees in their neighborhoods.
GWRVA is thrilled to announce its very FIRST Executive Director! Please see their press release for more info: PressRelease ED Hire Nov 25 2013
At the annual conference of the Connecticut Urban Forest Council (CUFC), GW Bridgeport (BPT) was presented with an award in recognition of their “Outstanding Work in Urban Forestry”! In presenting the award, CUFC President Steve Hladun cited the work Groundwork Bridgeport has done planting trees throughout the City of Bridgeport with students and community volunteers over the past 2 years, as well as their work in establishing a new horticultural/green jobs training program in conjunction with the Mayor’s Conservation Corps (MCC), which GW BPT advises. He also recognized GW BPT’s program to provide instruction to high school students in GIS mapping technology and engage them to assist in Bridgeport’s tree inventory efforts.
The CUFC is a statewide organization composed of representatives from CT environmental organizations, state agencies, universities, research institutions, corporations, municipal tree wardens, and citizen tree groups. Its purpose is to provide advice, assistance, education, information and support to urban and community forestry professionals, associated professionals, volunteers, and municipal/state and corporate leaders.
At a recent conference sponsored by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Groundwork Lawrence was presented the inaugural Peter R. Lee Healthy Communities Award before an audience of their peers from across Massachusetts. Read about the award and what and honor it is here.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 31, 2013
Group Releases Video Highlighting Region’s Cultural Resource Richness, Importance of Protecting Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks as National Monument
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Groundwork Doña Ana County (GWDA), a non-profit youth conservation and education group based in Las Cruces, today led a tour to the Providence Cone area of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks (OMDP). GWDA also released a three-minute video highlighting its youth crew’s archaeological survey finds within OMDP.
The video can be seen at http://bit.ly/1huxLCg.
The purpose of today’s tour and video release was to showcase some of the widespread artifacts located at Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks (OMDP) and to stress the importance of protecting these cultural and historical resources by designating OMDP as a national monument.
This summer and fall, a GWDA crew of 15 local young people, known as the “Green Team,” worked beside archaeologists and anthropologists to survey and map hundreds of significant artifacts at dozens of locations within the proposed OMDP National Monument.
The Green Team documented and left in place diverse artifacts including projectile points, petroglyphs and pictographs, ground stone tools, as well as other evidence that is highly suggestive of habitation practices. Some of these unique artifacts date between CE 400 to the mid 16th century, the time of Spanish occupation in our area; while others date back thousands of years to the Archaic Period.
The experience provided Green Team members with valuable work skills, a broadened understanding of career paths in cultural and natural resource stewardship, and a greater appreciation of the rich, cultural history waiting to be discovered on public lands within the proposed OMDP National Monument.
“Those who visit Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks are usually surprised to find just how many historical artifacts there are in the region, ranging from lithic tools to pictographs,” said Tim Fulton, GWDA executive director. “These artifacts tell us a lot about the people who used to live here, and it is our responsibility to protect these cultural gems so future generations can continue to enjoy them and learn from them.”
According to Angel Peña, an archaeologist from the region, there are thousands of archaeological sites filled with similar artifacts that have yet to be studied.
“Less than five percent of these wildlands have been surveyed professionally by archaeologists, and even with less than five percent surveyed, the number is still approximately two hundred-fifty known sites,” Peña said.
GWDA’s mission is to create opportunities for local people, especially youth, to learn new practical skills and take action on important community projects such as surveying the cultural sites of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks.
Adrian Avila, one of the young people participating as a Groundwork Doña Ana County Team Leader, said he believes the cultural artifacts found in the region are the primary reason why Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks should be permanently protected.
“These lands and the artifacts found here tell our story,” Avila said. “We have to protect them so that future generations can understand their roots and their connections to the very land we stand on.”
Added Fulton: “So much is not known about the cultures that lived here before and every year we learn more and more about the people who had inhabited this area hundreds and thousands of years ago.”
GWDA also released the 3-minute video to educate the public about their work. The video explores some of the artifacts the Green Team discovered and documented; the valuable work skills and greater appreciation of their public lands acquired by Green Team members; and why protecting the OMDP national monument is important from a cultural and historic resource perspective.
The Groundwork Dona Ana Green Team hopes that Interior Secretary Sally Jewell watches and enjoys the video, and is motivated by it to come visit the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks with the Green Team youth so she can gain firsthand experience of the place and its importance in the nation’s history and culture.
Groundwork Guyandotte is looking for a Program Coordinator to take on some fun and exciting projects conducting watershed improvement projects like rain gardens, rain barrel workshops, and stream cleanups; exploring and initiating community gardens and farmers markets; community education and outreach through Green Teams in schools, community meetings and events, and natural resource job training; and writing grants for Brownfields assessments and clean up projects.GW Guyandotte SWV Program Coordinator 2013