Mayor’s Office of Communications
55 Trinity Avenue, Suite 2500 • Atlanta, Georgia 30303
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/29/12
Atlanta Awarded $25,000 Cities of Service Grant for Recycling Initiative
Grant funds, provided by Bloomberg Philanthropies, will support new “impact volunteering” initiative to divert recyclable waste in Atlanta
ATLANTA – Mayor Kasim Reed announced today that the City of Atlanta has been awarded a $25,000 grant to engage volunteers in the city’s recycling initiative. The grant comes from Cities of Service, a bipartisan coalition of mayors committed to using service as a strategy, with funding from Bloomberg Philanthropies. Atlanta is one of 18 U.S. cities to be awarded a grant to support mayors who are harnessing the power of volunteers in a strategic way to address priority problems in their communities.
“As mayor, I see civic engagement and volunteerism as an integral part of our city’s rich and diverse heritage,” said Mayor Reed. “This generous grant leverages the power of our citizens to strategically and measurably increase the tonnage of recyclable waste diverted from our landfills, which will help Atlanta become a more sustainable city.”
The Cities of Service model focuses on “impact volunteering” – volunteer strategies that target community needs, use best practices, and set clear outcomes and measures to gauge progress. Dozens of cities across the nation have adopted the model since its introduction in 2009. Using this approach, New York City has coated more than 4 million square feet of rooftops to reduce carbon emissions by 745 metric tons, Nashville has upgraded more than 240 homes to increase energy efficiency and help the city recover from historic floods, and Pittsburgh has removed 20,000 pounds of litter to revitalize its neighborhoods.
Atlanta’s $25,000 grant will go towards educating and mobilizing a community-wide volunteer team that will work with at least 6,500 citizens to improve their recycling habits, increase the percentage of households recycling and reduce the tonnage of valuable recyclables that would otherwise end up in landfills.
More than 60 mayors competed for this initial round of grants. Grants ranging from $25,000 to $100,000 will also support volunteer initiatives in Austin, Texas; Baltimore, Md.; Birmingham, Ala.; Duluth, Minn.; Fall River, Mass.; Flint, Mich.; Indianapolis; Kalamazoo, Mich.; Little Rock, Ark.; Nashville, Tenn.; Orlando, Fla.; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Pierre, S.D.; Pittsburgh; Providence, R.I.; and Richmond, Calif.
Backed by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Cities of Service Impact Volunteering Fund is a $2 million fund. Nearly $1 million is being granted through this initial round, with an additional $1 million available for deployment in 2013. Grantee cities were selected based on the quality of their initiatives, potential for impact and implementation plans, among other criteria.
About Cities of Service
American cities face serious challenges and many mayors want to take advantage of every resource available to them – including the time and energy of public-spirited residents – to address those challenges. But in cities across America today, citizen service is often an underutilized or inefficiently utilized strategy by municipal governments. Founded in September 2009, Cities of Service supports mayors to leverage citizen service strategies, addressing local needs and making government more effective.
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For more information about the City of Atlanta, please visit http://www.atlantaga.gov or watch City Channel 26. Follow the City of Atlanta on Facebook and Twitter @City_of_Atlanta. Follow Mayor Reed on Facebook and Twitter @Kasim Reed