Hope Lives at The Grassroots

Hope lives at grassroots.  

By Stu Hennessey, VP, Sustainable West Seattle

I don’t know why things cannot get done when folks get elected and are paid well. A lot could be learned by our elected officials if they would come down to the grassroots level.

I have served on the board of Sustainable West Seattle for the last 3 years and have experienced a lot of reason to be hopeful. With an all volunteer staff and a small working membership I have seen many accomplishments in the past 3 years. Instead of complaining and retreating these folks that I have been associated with roll up their sleeves and get things done. Being a part of these local victories for the greater good fills me with hope for the future.

You too can be a part of the solution as openings are becoming available. If you are not at the table you might end up on the menu.

I am at the end of my 3 year term limit but I will not disappear.

To reflect on a few highlights, I am most impressed with the collaboration and facilitation of various projects such as Solarize Southwest  Seattle, The annual Greenlife Festival and the West Seattle Bike Connections.

In 2014 Solarize Southwest Seattle with help from SWS signed up 667 registrations and solarized 111 households creating 684 kilowatts of renewable power.  This helped to create a record year for rooftop solar installations in Seattle. Sustainable West Seattle hosted and advertised workshops in partnership with Seattle City Light, Northwest Seed and Sustainable Burien to get the word out and sign up customers.

This year we also saw a record attendance at our annual Greenlife Festival during the West Seattle street fair.  The information that was shared and the community coalescence that occurred were ravenously consumed by a diverse crowd.

The West Seattle Bike Connections group made great strides to enhance a healthy and happy alternative to the usual gridlock leaving West Seattle. Safer and improved routes to work centers and other neighborhoods are now being implemented due to the advice and experience of our local everyday cyclists.

More accomplishments with the West Seattle Tool Library and the Community Orchard of West Seattle or the community gatherings at West Seattle Meaningful Movies and the growth of the West Seattle Time Bank offer many opportunities to get involved. Bring your talents to any of our remaining board meetings for 2015 and begin to be a voice in your community for environmental, social, economic and soothing justice. See you there!