Leo Kuehl (pronounced “Keel”) has devoted his entire life to service and sustainability, and at 97 years old, he shows no signs of slowing down. “I don’t believe in wasting assets of any kind,” says Kuehl. “To me, ‘green’ is not just about recycling. ‘Green’ goes anywhere — any place that energy or time is used or consumed — including things like human energy, time, water, electricity, materials and so on.”
Entries in community (81)
Sure, you know all the cool bars in the city, but do you know where to find a 45,000-square-foot green roof park or the Benjamin Rush Medicinal Plant Garden? Now you do. The Pennsylvania Horticulture Society (PHS) presents the first walking guide to Center City Philadelphia’s gardens and parks. This colorful map is now available in hotels, SEPTA stations, museums and other attractions citywide, and an expanded version is available here. “The idea [was to] lift up Philadelphia’s most treasured public spaces and some of the hidden gems of the urban landscape,” says Alan Jaffe, PHS’s Director of Communcations. “A guide dedicated to our outdoor assets had not been compiled—until now.”
Story by Peggy Paul
The Urban Tree Connection’s Veggie Kids program in Haddington, which employs children aged five to 16 to grow and deliver fresh produce to impoverished families in their community, is closing the loop with a new composting program. Thanks to a $10,000 grant, the Veggie Kids will now collect organic waste from the same 25 families currently receiving produce deliveries.
The money is part of the 2013 Think Green Grant program from Waste Management and Keep America Beautiful, whose local chapter, Keep Philadelphia Beautiful (KPB) applied for the grant at the urging of the Urban Tree Connection (UTC). Together, the two nonprofits reached out to Bennett Compost to create the proposal. The program will also help expand Bennett’s on-site composting operation at Neighborhood Farms and recruit block captains (in a 10-square-block area) to engage neighbors in composting.
The initial goal of the proposal was to educate Haddington residents about the value of composting, and to develop a community compost program. “This is an area where we haven’t previously seen interest in composting services,” says Bennett Compost owner Tim Bennett.
“The idea is to keep the project going beyond the first year,” says KPB director Michelle Feldman. KPB hopes to spend the first year learning best practices and teaching both hard and soft skills to its employed youth to help them replicate the program in other neighborhoods.
“There will be some additional part-time jobs created in these communities,” says Bennett, “but the long-term plan is to transition them to hopefully micro-entrepreneurs, so we’re building wealth in areas that are traditionally underserved.”
Feldman has high hopes for the program. “We think it’s going to make a really big impact. We think that educating folks about composting is part of making really vibrant communities.”
Keep up with Keep Philadelphia Beautiful on Twitter @BeautifulPHL
Story by Molly O’Neill
In 2010, Emaleigh Doley’s neighborhood was in a precarious state. Rocked by the foreclosure crisis, the community was fragmented, and saw increases in litter and violence. “We had a lot of problems… impacting our quality of life,” Doley says.