Transition Rogers Park: Transforming Community
Oct 01, 2010 02:00AM
Transition Rogers Park (TRP), an initiative in one of Chicago’s most diverse neighborhoods, is built upon the foundation of the larger Transition Towns Movement. Residents are working to create a community-led response to challenges of energy, climate change and the economy through self-reliance, relocalization and relationships. Some of their initiatives include:
- Education – Through small group meetings, film series and community-wide events, TRP is raising awareness of the urgent need to move beyond fossil fuels.
- Shared Skills – TRP created the People’s College of Transition Skills as a way to share resources and talents. Educational events planned for this fall include urban food forages and workshops on permaculture, food preservation, rooftop gardens and cold frames—all with home-grown talent.
- Group Work – TRP has catalyzed groups based on members’ passion that create positive projects. The Gardening Group has brought together gardeners and social service organizations through its Howard Street Gardens initiative, providing an opportunity to share knowledge and break down stereotypes. A second garden is in the works and will be ready for planting next spring. This fall, the Heart and Soul Group is planning a community building workshop and the Local Commerce Group will host a workshop on money.
- Partnering with Others – TRP is participating in a community-wide initiative that will bring an urban farm and greenhouse to Rogers Park as an initial step in creating a local food system. Partners include Loyola University, community-based organizations and the local city alderman’s office.
- Celebration! – TRP takes time to celebrate life and relationships through potlucks, song circles and other social gatherings.
“We know that if we work together, not only can we lessen our impact, but we also can live more fully and justly,” says Transition Rogers Park organizer Pam Richart.