Verde Outreach addresses a divide that exists between sustainability and low-income communities, a Green Divide:
Portland’s communities are defined by environmental benefits, by whether a community has meaningful environmental assets: parks, habitat, investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency, stormwater management facilities, environmental education opportunities, green jobs and green businesses. Portland's growing sustainability movement makes purposeful investments in certain places and people, in certain businesses and institutions, creating vibrant, healthy and environmentally beneficial communities.Increasingly,
This movement does not prioritize equity, does not build environmental wealth in low-income people and people of color, in their neighborhoods or in their businesses and institutions. Portland’s low-income people and people of color spend their daily lives in places that suffer disproportionate environmental impacts, in environmentally-deficient places like NE Portland’s Cully Neighborhood. They are environmentally marginalized, excluded from the routine opportunities that build environmental wealth for other people.
Verde's Outreach-Advocacy activities bridge this Green Divide. Through Living Cully: A Cully Ecodistrict, Verde and partners bring new environmental investments to the Cully Neighborhood. Through Policy Advocacy, Verde and partners create a policy framework that empowers low-income people and people of color to drive environmental resources into their neighborhoods, in response to existing community needs.
Click on the headers below to learn more about specific projects and be sure to visit the Living Cully website for the most up-to-date information on that aspect of our work.
Working in the Neighborhood – Living Cully: A Cully Ecodistrict
2010, Verde, Hacienda CDC and NAYA established Living Cully: A Cully Ecodistrict. In Living Cully, we reinterpret sustainability as an anti-poverty strategy, introducing new environmental assets to Cully in response to existing community needs: health, employment, education, housing.
Living Cully Vision Statement
Verde, Hacienda CDC and NAYA establish a Vision Statement to guide our collaboration. This Vision Statement will reflect our shared commitment to community engagement, community benefit and environmental wealth.
Living Cully Workplan
Verde, Hacienda CDC and NAYA develop a Workplan, including:
Living Cully Performance Indicators
Through the Vision Statement and the Workplan, Verde, Hacienda CDC and NAYA institutionalize our inter-organizational relationship. Our work becomes explicitly linked, our outcomes interconnected. Working with PolicyLink, we establish Performance Indicators in order to evaluate progress toward the Workplan’s goals, indicators which each organization can utilize, producing data which can be easily shared between organizations and with other communities.
Living Cully Signature Projects.
Working outside the Neighborhood – Policy Advocacy
Environmental policies create more than environmental benefits or environmental winners and losers.
Clean Energy Works Oregon
Clean Energy Works Oregon is the next stage in Clean Energy Works Portland/CEWP, a pilot program to weatherize up to 500 qualified Portland homes through on-bill financing. CEWP was guided by an innovative Community Workforce Agreement, developed through a collaboration of community groups, labor, trainers, and contractors.
Portland Bike Share
Portland has a bike economy. A 2008 study found that: Economic activity generated by bike-related industry in Portland totals approximately $90 million, a 38% increase since 2006; and that the bike economy provides between 850 and 1150 Portland jobs. Equity policies have not been part of Portland’s bike economy, despite public investment in promotion and bike infrastructure, and despite low barriers to entry for bike jobs and businesses.