Community News

The Green Ideas Challenge Returns!

Newly planted trees at Four Mile Run. Photo provided by ACTBetween now and April 3, ACTion Alexandria, an initiative of ACT for Alexandria, is asking for your ideas for making Alexandria an even greener, more sustainable community during the 2015 Green Ideas Challenge. A panel of judges will review each submitted idea, and winning ideas will receive up to $2,000 to be put into ACTion! Thanks to a generous grant from The Dominion Foundation, a total of $5,000 will be awarded.
Get Started:
1. Review the challenge rules at: Green Ideas Challenge | ACTion Alexandria
2. Click on ‘Add Your Idea’ and tell us about your project
3. Tell your friends, family and coworkers to support your idea
4. A panel of judges will review ideas and select the winners
5. Those selected will receive up to $2,000 to be put into ACTion!

Last June, ACTion Alexandria announced the winners of the Green Ideas Challenge, and thanks to a generous sponsorship from The Dominion Foundation, ACTion was able to fund four projects benefiting Alexandria. Six months into the projects, ACTion went back to check in with the 2014 grantees.
Here are some of the highlights:
Four Mile Run Community Fall Tree Planting, Community Member: Kevin B.
With $1,000 of initial funding from the Four Mile Run Farmers & Artisan Market matched by a $1,000 grant from ACTion Alexandria, the community launched the Four Mile Run Park Master Plan and Four Mile Run Restoration Project to revive the park. Almost two dozen trees were planted in early November and volunteers came together for a community mulching. Additional funds from individuals through the website Citizinvestor as well as from Alexandria’s Living Landscape Fund helped to supplement the project. In the spring, volunteers will start to water the new trees.
Art and Nature Series, Community Member: Margaret W.
With the group, Friends of Huntley Meadows Park, Margaret W. teaches art and nature classes to encourage young students to learn about the outdoors through drawing and journaling. The $1,000 grant from ACTion purchased field art kits and art supplies to provide drawing and natural history instruction to 83 children so far with more winter programing yet to come. Margaret says, “Journaling enhances observational skills, patience, scientific understanding and empathy with natural ecosystems.”
School Wetland Garden Intiative, Community Member: Ana H.
Local student, Ana H. transformed her award-winning science experiment into a service-learning project for elementary students across Alexandria. After studying wetland plants and local waterways, Ana formed partnerships with Maury Elementary School and Alexandria Seaport Foundation to work with Alexandria City Public School 5th graders to grow wetland plants to be transplanted into local waterways. Funding from ACTion will be used to implement the first project starting in March with Maury Elementary Students. Ana is working with other local schools to expand the program further.
Recycling Bin at Ben Brenman Park, Community Member: Debbi K.
After noticing cans and bottles overflowing from trash bins while watching her son’s baseball games, Debbi K. decided to take action. Through Green Ideas Challenge funding, Debbi helped arrange for a recycling bin to be placed in Ben Brenman Park starting in spring 2015.

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