Dear GCF Community,
As we reflect on this past year’s challenges and achievements, we wanted to take a moment to thank all of our supporters for the continued belief in our mission. As many of us have experienced loss and hardship, we have also seen amazing moments of coming together and working towards a collective good.
Despite the pandemic over the past year, GCF experienced deepening partnerships and so many instances of community leadership and comradery that allowed us to step up for and with NYCHA residents, Corps Members, and alumni. Our Service Team pivoted towards virtual outreach to conduct wellness checks with the volunteer residents and communities tied to the farm sites while having a small presence at the sites to continue produce cultivation and distribution. Our eight alumni Eco-Hub Fellows allowed the team to re-open the farms and prepare the sites for Cohort 21, who immediately got to work servicing their communities once their term began in the fall. Our alumni services team launched multiple solar training partnerships that employed alumni and other NYCHA residents, and provided cash assistance and job placement support. GCF’s social enterprise adapted from energy efficiency to include Census outreach and tree inventorying. We bid farewell to beloved staff members and welcomed new leadership. Our staff, alumni, Corps Members, board, partners, volunteers, Advocates, and funders truly stepped up to serve in this great time of need.
In a year of harrowing statistics, we celebrate outcomes and impact with special appreciation:
Looking Back on 2020, We:
- Graduated our 20th Cohort
- Adapted to COVID, prioritizing the safety of our community
- Shared our model for training alongside NYSERDA
- Raised our voices for Anti-Racism
- Celebrated Juneteenth with a new initiative across our farms
- Mourned the loss of GCF legend Lawrence Harris
- Welcomed our new Executive Director, Tonya Gayle
- Co-organized a Climate Week NYC Event with JobsFirstNYC, HOPE, and NEW
- Cheered GCF Alum Domingo Morales being awarded the David Prize
- Made sure New Yorkers were counted in the US Census
- Held our first-ever Fundraising Event, marking 10 Years of GCF
- Were in the news, rounding out the year being featured in The Atlantic
As the urgency to act for climate and racial justice intensifies, our resolve is stronger than ever. GCF is excited about the road ahead. We expect to continue to change and grow throughout 2021, working intentionally towards a greener and more equitable future rooted in anti-racist principles and ready for the curve balls we know will keep coming. We work passionately every day to make the promise of this future NYC real. Thank you for being a part of this community, for making our work possible, and for your investment in the young leaders of Green City Force.
The GCF Team