It wasn't very long ago that the River Raisin Institute registered and voila! Thanks to the project team of Kelly Salchow-MacArthur, designer; Danielle Conroyd, Sharon Venier, Brittany Santure, the new Green Map is making quite a splash - here's a post from the team at RRI, and you can download and enjoy the map here. We love how it's packaged up, ready for collecting your own observations and favorite sites!
RESILIENT MONROE GREEN MAP PROJECT
Our Resilient Monroe Green Map initiative goals are to:
• introduce green mapping to the local community by focusing on fresh, local food resources;
• raise environmental awareness and engagement through educating and interacting with our Monroe community;
• explore the green living, nature and culture in the City of Monroe, Monroe Township and Frenchtown Township;
• invite the public to enhance our community Green Map;
• tap into the community’s awareness of their surroundings, and engage them in making thoughtful food- and more broadly, environmental choices and
• involve children in a way that inspires the next generation of environmental stewards to explore their hometown area and learn local options for healthy and sustainable lifestyle choices
Designed by Kelly Salchow MacArthur of Michigan State University, the kit includes a printed Resilient Monroe Green Map, My Green Map passport booklet, green pencil, and Resilient Monroe Green Map medallion.
The printed Resilient Monroe Green Map identifies fresh, local food resources, information on recycling and composting, creating habitats for pollinators, and safe fish eating guidelines. The interactive passport booklet is a sketch book for drawing their own green map using a sampling of Green Map® icons. The green pencil contains recycled non-wood content. The wooden medallion can be worn as a pin, necklace or attached to a backpack to help spread the word through a grassroots method.
We were able to secure funding from Monroe County Environmental Fund for 2,000 Resilient Monroe Green Maps and 1,000 My Green Map passport booklets. We will distribute the maps through a variety of venues such as schools, farmers markets , restaurants, realtors, hotels, and health food stores. 400 maps are designated for distribution through community organizations including Monroe Community Opportunity Program, Monroe Family YMCA, and Monroe County Health Department.
We kicked off the project at the Monroe County Earth Day Expo event held on April 14, 2018 at the Monroe County Community College. More than 50 exhibitors participated in the Earth Day event which offered educational and interactive exhibits promoting green living, buying local and building sustainable community. We estimated more than 400 people attended. We introduced guests who visited our exhibit to Green Mapping and shared 200 tool kits.
Recipients were encouraged to look at their own yard, neighborhood and school and search out environmentally positive aspects in their community. They were invited to interact with the large Green Map. At the event, we connected with teachers and we will be bringing the project into 6 local elementary class rooms. Each teacher will receive 30 kits for their students along with a custom Green Map passport stamp.We partnered with the Monroe County Library System which is currently hosting the project in their Ellis Resource Center, Dorsch Memorial, and Frenchtown branches. These three branches each received a poster map of their neighborhood and local area, 200 tool kits and instructions for staff to help educate and distribute the kits to their patrons. Patrons plot their own findings by placing a Green Map® icon sticker on the local map and get their booklet stamped. Each library has a custom Green Map passport stamp so patrons can visit each library and collect all three stamps. We will collect the information from the libraries and pending additional funding we plan to collate the information into a revised map.
As part of the Monroe County Food Advisory Council strategic plan, a greater emphasis has been placed on access to fresh and healthy food for low-income and vulnerable populations. Monroe County Opportunity Program (MCOP) has led these efforts in its operation as the Monroe County Food Bank and hub of emergency distribution in Monroe County. Through a grant from Community Foundation of Monroe County, MCOP and River Raisin Institute will work in partnership to complete a Green Mapping process that aims to inform the general public, including people with low incomes and those who reside in more rural areas of Monroe County, of opportunities to access fresh and healthy food and live sustainably using locally sourced foods. This partnership will allow us to expand this information to include food bank locations and Fresh Opportunity Markets.