Thursday, March 5, 2009

Third Transition Update

The Sonnenschein Green Initiative, Transition Committee held a meeting Wednesday, March 4, with 27 people in attendance. Here are the highlights:

OUTREACH EDUCATION: Jennifer Dauksha-English presented the details for our Summer Permaculture Certification Series, and our 3-day Regional Sustainability Forum, which will be held June 5-7. The group spent 20 minutes reviewing Jennifer's 8-page newly developed Green Guide for Lewis County, TN. The group is trying to raise $800 by asking local businesses and organizations to join the initiative and get their names listed in the Green Guide. The Guide will hopefully be posted in a few weeks.

YOUTH EDUCATION: Debbie Landers again introduced the four students from the General Assembly Academy. The students started a blog - to view their blog click here. They also wrote a letter to the editor about the Sonnenschein Green Initiative - to read letter click here. Debbie shared the students curriculum that they helped design. Click here to view curriculum.

GREEN PROCLAMATION: Debbie Landers and Connie Sharp reported on the progress of the Proclamation. The group decided that the Proclamation would be brought before the City and County in the month of April instead of March, so that we have more time to speak with the City Council Memebrs and Couty Commisisoners. By postponing we will have more time to educate them on the initiative before they vote. Connie Sharp made photocopies of all the Commisioners contact information and passed this out to our group so that the group can make calls over the next weeks.

Food and Farming Working Group also held a meeting Wednesday, March 4. The group is organizing the next Green Evening Cafe' on March 24, 6-8:30 pm at the Emporium in downtown Hohenwald. The Food and Farming Group spent time figuring out the itinerary for the Green Evening. Presentors during the evening will include: Matthew English and Cliff Davis of Ecological Artisans and Casandra Warner of Cane Creek Nature Works Farm. We will also have a cafe conversation (for details on world cafe click here) on food and farming in Lewis County. There will be a seed and plant exchange as part of the event.

After the event planning session we split into three breakout groups: Farmers Market, Community Garden and Community Kitchen. The Farmers Market group noted that the creation of a Farmers Market was being discussed on both the city and county level. One of the members of this group has started communicating with a number of Amish and Menonite in the community to gain their interest in participating. The Community Garden group announced that Buffalo Valley was going to lease the group some land to start a garden this Spring. The lease will be minimal, just enough to cover property taxes. Just after the meeting about 14 people took a field trip to the new garden site. The Community Kitchen group did not have much to report on as this was the first time the topic was discussed since November, 2008. They did identfiy an immediate need for the community kitchen for a potential alternative cheese business. The group came up with a few next steps to contact other operating kitchens.

The next Sonnenschein Green Initiative meeting will be held Wednesday, March 18 from 11:30-1:30 at the Technology Center in Hohenwald. The group meets every other Wednesday. For more details about upcoming meetings and projects contact, 931-796-4874 or 888-878-2434.