FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT- Fran Ayaribil: firstname.lastname@example.org
NECN awards grants for 8 community – based projects in inner North/Northeast Portland
PORTLAND – Eight community-based projects received grants of $1,500.00 each from the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (NECN). The purpose of the grants program is to provide neighborhood and community organizations with the opportunity to foster community development and improve the quality of life for residents of inner North/Northeast Portland.
The Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI) provides funding for the grants program to the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods, along with Portland’s six other Neighborhood Offices and Coalitions.
NECN’s 2018 grantees represent a diverse group of participants, with projects, including: urban gardening, student centered equity programs, and critical services delivery. The awards will go to:
- “Green In The Hood” – A partnership with the Urban League of Portland, Mudbone Grown and Communitecture to support the Urban Harvest Garden (UHG). UHG represents a community gardening space for Africans and African Americans, in historically black, North Portland neighborhoods. Scheduled work parties will include conversations around barriers to accessing cultural foods and green spaces; as well as, how to empower the community to change systems.
- “Community Cooking Nights” – Offered in conjunction with Concordia University and Faubion School’s “3 to PhD” program; Community Cooking Nights aims to build food preparation skills and offer opportunities to learn about nutrition through culinary heritages and culturally specific foods. The project will offer cooking classes, as well as, monthly events where culturally diverse families can share recipes that the community and neighbors can prepare and enjoy together.
- “Sabin School Student Equity Group” – This project addresses youth empowerment, community conversations, and community building at Sabin School through the development of a student-centered, equity group that focuses on restorative justice principles and practices. Under the direction of a professional, restorative justice trainer; the project participants meet monthly to discuss issues of implicit bias, school to prison pipeline, racism and other timely topics. Developed in partnership with the Sabin Site Council & PTA, the project brings restorative justice tools and training to Sabin School staff, teachers and students.
- “Vanport Mosaic – Re-union Dinner” – The Vanport Mosaic represents a collective of diverse artists, storytellers, educators and historians who have come together to honor and preserve the experience of those who lived in the city of Vanport. On May 25-28, 2018, the Mosaic will commemorate both the 70th anniversary of the flood that destroyed the city of Vanport, as well as, the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act, with four days of exhibits, theater performance and a re-union/celebration dinner.
- “Vernon Portrait Stories” – The Vernon Portrait Studios is a documentary project that illuminates the history of the school and the northeast neighborhoods where Vernon School and their families reside. Initiated by Vernon School PTA, the project hopes to bring into focus and create dialog about the identity of the school and its surrounding neighborhoods. The project will select 12 or more former Vernon students, who are immediate family members of current Vernon students, to be photographed and interviewed; in order to add an inter-generational perspective. A Vernon Portrait Stories book will be produced, along with quotes from the interviews. The project will also include two events that will be open to the public and intended to introduce Vernon School to the community.
- “Elevating Black Voices in Public Discourse” – The Portland African-American Leadership Forum (PAALF) and Lisa Bates from the Black Life Experiential Research Group are partnering to produce and disseminate “DIY Publishing” periodicals, which aim to inform and engage N/NE Portland community members about the proposed redevelopment of the Hill Block in the Boise neighborhood. The DIY project is an organizing tool that allows for a wide distribution of important information for Black participation in civic decision-making.
- “Third Annual Nikki Brown Clown Block Party” – Sabin CDC, the Black Parent Initiative (BPI) are planning a cultural celebration and block party in June 2018, featuring Portland’s Nicole Sandoval, as Nikki Brown Clown. Mrs. Sandoval performs at many private parties and community events; including cultural celebrations, such as Good In The Hood. The Black Parent Initiative will emphasize literacy and family empowerment at the Block Party through their mascot, Leo the Literacy Lion.
- “Community Outreach/Emergency Services in N/NE Portland” The Allen Temple Church serves as a critical hub in N/NE Portland and provides needed services to over 350 member of their congregation and surrounding community members. The church is striving to rebuild their emergency services and outreach programs, pursuant to a devastating fire in 2015. Services include: drug/alcohol abuse programs, emergency food/shelter closet, HIV/AIDS Education project, Social Justice Outreach & Training, Homeless Outreach Team and Mentoring in schools. Partners include: Oregon Food Bank, SMART, NAACP and Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon.
Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods is home to 11 neighborhoods: Alameda, Boise, Concordia, Eliot, Humboldt, Irvington, King, Sabin, Sullivan’s Gulch, Vernon and Woodlawn. The Coalition is a forum for neighbors to address issues of shared concern, advocate for their priorities, and work together to shape the future of their neighborhoods. NECN actively supports collaboration across lines of race, culture, economic status and neighborhood boundary.