In Attendance: Ginger Danz, Shea Wells, Carl Thompson, Doug Arbogast, Tom Rist, Aimee Rist, Jessica Smith, Holly Clark, Amanda Sapienza
Note: November’s meeting convened at Sedona Grill. December’s meeting is canceled. Monthly meetings will resume in January and will take place at the Cathedral Cafe in Fayetteville on the last Monday of each month.
Recycling Committee Updates: Committee Chair and new GREAT vice-president, Jessica Smith reported that the first recycling committee meeting will occur in January to identify the committee’s goals and outline a timeline for completing them. Agenda, meeting time and location to be announced via e-mail to list serve participants. Doug reported that Mission West Virginia is beginning an electronics recycling program and is exploring the feasibility of drop-off bins in Fayetteville. Details to follow after the New Year. Televisions, used computer parts, and other miscellaneous electronics continue to be accepted at Goodwill stores. A new Goodwill has recently opened in Oak Hill. Requirements for drop-off will be reported in the next meeting. Jessica proposed adding a brief recycling committee meeting to the end of monthly Green Team meetings in an effort to consolidate meeting times and increase involvement. Carl seconded the idea and it was unanimously decided that it will begin after January or February’s meeting. Aimee requested the recycling team have a presence at the Earth Day celebration since this years theme, is Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Amanda expressed a desire to make a pamphlet outlining Fayette County recycling requirements, options, and locations ready to be distributed by Earth Day. Possibilities for collecting batteries and such for recycling during the Earth Day celebration were briefly discussed.
Earth Day Committee Updates: Committee Chair and GREAT past president, Aimee Rist confirmed that the 2011 Earth Day Celebration will occur on Saturday, April 23rd from 12-5pm. The event will happen rain or shine and will be held outside in downtown Fayetteville. The Memorial Building has once again been secured as a rain location. It was suggested that the rain location be publicized in advance instead of announcing it on that day in an effort to encourage folks to attend regardless of the weather. Vendors will be asked to stay until 5pm instead of 3pm this year. The permit application has been submitted to Fayetteville’s police department and is awaiting approval. A climbing wall has been confirmed. An art contest with local schools for an Earth Day t-shirt logo was discussed. Where to purchase environmentally friendly t-shirts in bulk, prizes, and other details will be determined in a future committee meeting. PAN’s Environmental Film Festival will most likely occur the day before the Earth Day event, details to be announced. GREAT’s Earth day celebration will presently be a one day event. Discussion regarding expanding the event into various happenings throughout the week was tabled.
New Committee Formation: Discussion related to developing a fundraising committee and generating money via fundraising versus grant writing was tabled. Treasurer, Tom Rist reported that the Earth Day celebration is currently GREAT”s largest fundraiser. $1000 was cleared after all expenses were paid last year. It was suggested that fundraising options be discussed with the entire team instead of as a committee. GREAT does not currently have a grant writer, discussion involving seeking one was brief. Brainstorming methods for increasing volunteer involvement and new membership occurred. Offering more mixers throughout the year was proposed as an option due to the success of this year’s mixer. The question was raised regarding whether a sub-committee for increasing membership and volunteers was needed and will be discussed again.
West Virginia Sustainable Community partnership update: Printed copies of the sustainable communities survey were reviewed. The November 39th deadline for completion has been extended indefinitely. Thanks to the help from students at St. Peter’s and Paul, energy efficiency/water conservation kits will be distributed December 8th, 9th, and 14th during Mt. Hope and Fayetteville High School basketball games. The goal is to distribute 30 kits per game and complete sustainability surveys at the same time.
Student Intern Update: Jessica reports that the deadline for application is December 14th. Carl and Jessica have met with one potential candidate and will announce a decision after the deadline. It was agreed that an intern may be very helpful with expanding outreach and community involvement and work the intern can complete will be included on the agenda for
New Business: Increasing efforts to involve more of Fayette County and some methods for doing so were discussed. A suggestion was made that all current contacts in each of Fayette County’s 9 municipalities with local government be approached. Presently and historically, the majority of GREAT’s active membership live in and around Fayetteville and discussion has been resumed on why it is important that communities other than Fayetteville become actively involved in advancing the mission of this organization. In light of recent discussion on focusing effort in and around Fayetteville versus the entire county, Jessica presented a brief on why we are and must remain the Fayette County Green Team:
1. The group had this discussion last year when non-profit status and Articles of
Incorporation were completed and a decision was made to remain a county organization at that time.
2. Our logo, banners, and web site were created to reflect this decision.
3. We have been doing education outreach in schools in Oak Hill, Nutall, and Montgomery.
4. The Earth Day celebration gets funding from businesses outside of Fayetteville.’
5. Our partnership with WVSC is Fayette County based.
6. We work well with county level government and this should not be abandoned as it can help lend weight to efforts toward improving our relationship with Fayetteville’s governing body.
7. Being a county based organization opens up more opportunities for grants at the county level.
Because Fayetteville is the county seat and all current officers and most active members live in or near Fayetteville, it was decided that the monthly meeting will continue to take place in Fayetteville. It was determined that a good method for increasing participation in surrounding Fayette County communities is to identify existing community leaders and those currently involved in community activities and groups. Inviting local leadership to monthly meeting was also suggested. Holding mixers in other communities such as Oak Hill was briefly discussed. Offering focus groups and periodic meetings related to specific topics outside of Fayetteville was agreed upon. This topic will continue to be addressed throughout the year as the organization’s goals continue to be identified and developed.