SUSTAINABILITY BUSINESS FELLOW
August was a busy month for Jake both in and out of the office. Early in the month he and his advisor Matt Mehalik met with Commuteinfo for the second time to discuss the Transportation Transformation. At this meeting it was confirmed that they would be present the idea to the Commuteinfo partners at a meeting in September. On a similar note Jake held two BCC subcommittee meetings to discuss the Transportation Transformation and the Green Office Challenge in further detail.
Each subcommittee meeting started off with Jake providing a brief background of the programs along with a status update. The groups discussed how they would like to see the events play out and what they could each bring to the table. The ideas were recorded and will be presented to the rest of the group at the next BCC meeting on September 7th. Jake spent the later part of the month at Sustainable Pittsburgh working on these projects along with preparing presentations for the BCC meeting and the board retreat which will both be taking place in early September.
The Community Day event that Jake and the rest of the Green Cities fellows had been preparing for finally played out on August 21st. The group met several times throughout August to iron out the details for event. Jake specifically assisted in communications with the Pittsburgh Food Forest and helped prepare the necessary tools for the sites. On the day of the event Evan and Jake lead a crew on the Food Forest site, where they leveled out a designated learning space. Before they started the area was on a hill and rather uneven and by the end it was both flat and cleared out. Overall the Community Day was very successful. There was good turnout from the community and on top of constructing four rain barrels there was clear progress was made on both the Hazelwood Urban Gardens and Hazelwood Food Forest sites.
Jake also worked with the Food Forest earlier in the month to prepare the site for the Green Cities event. Aside from the Community Day Jake had the opportunity to work on another big project with the Pittsburgh Food Forests this month; Hot House! Hot House is an event put on by the Sprout Fund to showcase the projects they have funded to their supporters and the community. The Pittsburgh Food Forests received funding from the Sprout Fund at the end of 2009 and would be presenting the project at the event.
This year’s Hot House had a carnival theme and each group was given materials to construct a small booth. Jake helped to paint, decorate, and assemble the booth. He also assisted in planning for the event. After concluding that “bobbing for local fruit” would be relevant to both the Food Forest mission and the carnival theme Jake helped decorate a rain barrel and purchased the fruit from local farmers’ markets. Jake was also given the responsibility of running the booth the entire night with the assistance of another volunteer. For five hours the two of them explained what the Food Forest was and what the group has, and hopes to, accomplish. Throughout the night there was a consistent flow of people learning about the program and having fun bobbing for local fruit.