Wednesday, April 10, 2013

vote for LA2050 - what project speaks to you?

Have you seen ads around the internet for this?

It's the "LA2050,"sponsore by The Goldhirsch Foundation, whereby winning organizations will receive $100,000 to implement their project ideas:
Spearheaded by the Goldhirsh Foundation, LA2050 believes in the power of Angelenos to shape the future of our region. LA2050 has looked at the health of the region along the following key indicators: arts & cultural vitality, education, environmental quality, health, housing, income & employment, public safety, and social connectedness. And we’ve made informed projections about where we’ll be in the year 2050 if we continue on this current path.
What does a successful Los Angeles in 2050 look like to you? The My LA2050 challenge invites you to dream of the most innovative and creative ways to tackle Los Angeles’ biggest problems. With your help, we will shape the LA story anew – and build the LA2050 of our aspirations.

A cool thing, despite some valid complaints. (Here's a pretty insightful review from L.A. I'm Yours about the layout and organization of this whole event, as well as background on Goldhirsch/GOOD and their process - it does seem rather sudden and the navigation of the site is, practically speaking, rather horrible. You literally have to click through all 279 organizations in order if you want to see every one, and there's no search or category function. And it does play out like a bit of a popularity contest.)

Network & Nature, now #39 (at time of typing).
There are a lot of projects involving arts/culture, which everyone knows I'm a fan of, as well as education and health, all indisputably worthy causes. But the causes that I'm most for are actually environmental.

The reason environmental issues speak to me is not because I'm some idealistic, leaf-waving hippiomeister (okay actually, on some level, I probably am - but still, here me out!).

It's because they affect everyone, on every level. No matter whether you're young or old, rich or poor, at what stage you're at in your life. You don't have to be a kid or local business to receive the benefits of improved environmental factors.

At the same time, as an underlying, foundational entity, the environment impacts multiple aspects of daily life. A betterment in space, resource use and greenery, as well as awareness of these elements, translates to ups in health, economy and neighborhood safety. These are all issues that plague urban spaces, and funnily enough, urban spaces are known for their lack of environmental connection. ;)

A video from the Natural History Museum on their
NHM Urban Safari
for citizen awareness and
participation on local biodiversity and wildlife.
Honestly, environmental integrity and sustainability awareness just seem like common sense to me. I want to be able to drink water without having to worry about what's in it, I want to be able to breathe in air that doesn't impart harmful particles, smelly or sneaky otherwise, and I don't want to get cancer 30 years down the line from unbeknownst accumulated chemicals, darn it! Is that so much to ask?

Such things are actually basic rights U.S. charities fight for in developing, third-world countries. Clean water. Better resource business practices from capitalizing, hegemonic companies. Us not dumping our shizmiz onto plots of their lovely land because we don't want any more landfills in our territory.

Don't you think we should also care enough about these issues for ourselves? I mean, not to take away from all the great work that is being done in those places that desperately, direly need it. I guess what I mean is that I see it as a matter of personal responsibility as well.

Anyway, now that I've gone on my spiel, and if you have read everything up to this point, I do thank you, here are some of the projects that spoke to me out of the list, in no particular order:

With so many great ideas being offered up, I also have to mention a few more that naturally pulled out at me. I couldn't help but notice ones like #35 Los Angeles Review of Books and #53 Power of the Pen: Writing Together, as well as #13 Self-Sustainable Artistic Community,

Take a look yourself when you have the time! Even if getting involved is not your thing, all these visions and avenues of implementation are pretty inspiring. Voting ends April 17, at 12 PM noon PST.

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