Recently, we started in earnest to learn all we can about the blogging world, including how to increase our site traffic so we can continue to offer GOforChange to our community and the wider world. Naturally, we enrolled in Upstart Blogger’s 30-Day Blogging Course . We are known mostly within our own networks, where we reliably preach to the converted. But what about people who are just waking up to environmental and economic challenges? With our expertise, wealth of information, online forums, calendar, and marketplace, we are determined to reach a wider audience.
We started GOforChange in early 2008 to help spread the word about the growing sustainability , local food , social justice, and greening movement in the Baltimore area. A blog was the right format to share information about upcoming events, volunteers opportunities, advice, and all the organizations and businesses in our area that are working for a better world. We are always learning about new things — community gardens, energy auditors, local artisans, schools — and the list of topics keeps growing. We continue to believe that reliable information about local resources is valuable to people who want to know how they can make a difference in their daily lives and communities.
As of Day 5 of the course, we have already learned much about social networks, Technorati rankings , Google Analytics, and reaching out to like-minded blogs. We are shifting our posts to offer more advice, musings, and stories from Julie’s work as a green architect and sustainability consultant, and Alyssa’s hands-on artistry in urban gardening, composting, and other DIY projects. Interspersed with posts about Baltimore-area topics, these will have a broad appeal beyond our geographic region. The Upstart Blogger course is something we probably should have taken six months ago, but back then we just didn’t realize how much we don’t know! Stay tuned for updates on our progress.
Collective Cry is an online community of artists, activists and allies of social justice. They are dedicated to uplifting and providing healing to systemically oppressed communities through education, community development, economic development and the distribution of media content. "Collective Cry envisions a social environment in which all have access to the means to reach their potential for self-actualization through self-determination." Some of their justice initiatives and other developing economic and awareness initiatives include "Prison Mentorship Project", "My Quest Home" and "The Center for Prosperity".
Edible Chesapeake is a free quarterly publication that celebrates the abundance of local and seasonal foods in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Supporting family farmers, fishermen, food artisans, chefs, and other food-related businesses, as well as the consumers, home cooks and restaurant-goers in the Maryland, Washington, DC, Virginia and parts of Pennsylvania. Find your copy here. You can also read it online and buy a subscription or back issues through their website. Below, I have conveniently listed business that exist only in Maryland. View a more complete list of organic farms and restaurants in the surrounding areas here .
Common Waters is a blog that focuses on environmental issues affecting the Chesapeake Bay region (New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware, and the District of Columbia), with an emphasis on areas of concern affecting watersheds that surround Baltimore City. Created by Valerie Butler who has a B.S. in biology and has worked for many federal, state and local environmental research organizations. Find out more about what’s being done to protect our waterways, environmental film fests and other outdoor events.
After watching this beautiful, simple film, you will want to run outside, grab a few hundred friends and make some words yourself. Never has the sense of urgency about climate action been so creatively expressed. Its relevance for Baltimore’s budding Sustainability Plan cannot be underestimated. While you are inspired and raring to go, head on over to 350.org and sign up to receive their action notices. We are scheming ways to help Baltimore develop a Climate Action Plan , neighborhood by neighborhood. Drop us a line with your ideas — either via the "contact us" page or on our social networking site’s discussion forums. Yes, we need to lean on our elected officials ( federal , state , and local ), and YES — there is a lot we can do ourselves.
A short email conversation between Alyssa and Roy Skeen from the Village Green Community Garden in Remington.
A : When was the garden started? By? R : Garden was started in 2007 by Megan Beller and Barb Fischer and myself? A : How long have you lived in Remington? R : 8 months A : Was it something you were wanting to do for a long time? R : For about a year. A : Who did and who didn’t have experience in gardening or farming before the project? R : I had grown food for one season prior. A : Did you do any soil testing? R : Yes we did three soil tests. A : Where were you able to get your top soils from? Continued