By SARAH SHMERLING | Editor-in-Chief
Resilient Palisades is supporting an effort by Los Angeles’ Climate Emergency Mobilization Office and the Neighborhood Council Sustainability Alliance to recruit “Cool Block Leaders” throughout Pacific Palisades.
“Cool Blocks LA uses a proven neighbor-to-neighbor model that has helped thousands of people make their neighborhoods safer and healthier, prepare for disasters, save money, and lighten their environmental impact,” according to information shared by Resilient Palisades. “You can green your neighborhood, make it safer to walk in or decide with your neighbors to do whatever is right for your area.”
The Neighborhood Council Sustainability Alliance is designed to advance sustainability and resilience throughout LA through advocacy, sharing of best practices and community action.
“We often feel helpless in the face of the climate crisis because whatever we do is only a drop in the bucket and is not enough,” Lisa Hart, a NCSA steering board member, shared. “Cool Blocks LA gives us more agency—there are things that we can do and that we are more likely to do in a structured, but flexible, program and when we are working together.”
Hart explained that the program creates a “stronger local network of people who are more connected to each other and who are better prepared for disasters.” She added that the program needs a “good showing from a lot of neighborhoods” in order to receive a grant, so the more people from the Palisades who commit, the more likely Cool Blocks will be able to provide its program to everyone.
“This is a huge opportunity for the city that we don’t want to miss,” Hart, a resident of Silver Lake, said.
Cool Blocks is a five-month, nine-meeting program that is self-directed by a team of between five and eight households recruited by Cool Block Leaders on a particular block, defined as both sides of the street up to the corners, a cul-de-sac or apartment building.
“A meeting is hosted and facilitated by a different team member in his/her/their home (or via Zoom) every two weeks with the support of a step-by-step meeting guide,” according to Resilient Palisades. “Each 90-minute to two-hour meeting focuses on a distinct topic connected to reducing your carbon footprint, conserving water, preparing for disasters or improving the quality of life in your neighborhood.”
Leaders are trained and have ongoing coaching support. Overall, the commitment is about two to four hours per week for five months.
One of the co-founders of Resilient Palisades, Ingrid Steinberg, shared with the Palisadian-Post that she has signed up to be a leader—and she is “very excited about bringing the program to Pacific Palisades.”
Upcoming informational meetings are slated to take place on September 9, 15, and 19. For more information, including additional meetings, visit ncsa.la/events.
The group is seeking at least eight Cool Block Leaders in the Palisades to meet its goal of 200 citywide by September 23. Interested Palisadians can reach out to email@example.com to learn more about what the Cool Blocks program could look like in the community.
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