HAND has recently joined the Hawthorne Boulevard Business Association (HBBA) and the four other neighborhoods that border Hawthorne in a new sustainability initiative known as the Hawthorne Area Civic Ecology Project (HACE). The HACE group won a $6,000 grant from Venture Portland to hold a series of workshops during the spring to jump start collective efforts to make SE Portland more sustainable and resilient. HACE will work to bring the community together using a process known as Civic Ecology. The kick-off will be at the HBBA annual meeting in February, and a town-hall style working meeting will be held in conjunction with Earth Day, in April 2012. At the meetings, residents, business owners, community leaders and others will use Civic Ecology to define common goals for the broader SE area, then adopt plans for achieving them. Besides the initial goal of stimulating business to adopt green practices, the meetings are expected to lead to formation of working groups on such topics as transportation, waste use and recycling, energy conservation, sustainability in the home and community gardening.

In addition to the HBBA, HACE includes 5 neighborhood associations: Mount Tabor, Hosford-Abernethy, Buckman, Richmond and Sunnyside Also, HACE is working with Tim Smith and Anneliese Sitterly of SERA Architects, a leading practioner of Civic Ecology, as well as Axis Performance and Portland Sustainability Institute, and expects to involve faculty and students from Portland State University. HACE has a grant application pending with Southeast Uplift. For further information, please contact Michele Michado, of the Hawthorne Hostel: eco@thinkhawthorne.com.