Recently Build Brigades teamed up with the Norris Square Neighborhood Project to build an Earthship- inspired greenhouse made of tires, soil, and solar panels!
If you aren't familiar with NSNP, their mission is "to promote positive change through youth education, community leadership, green spaces, the arts, and the celebration of Latino culture," as stated on their website.
Currently Kensington is extremely resource restrained. So far NSNP has 6 themed community gardens in Kensington, Philadelphia (near Fishtown!) to "help promote cultural awareness and preservation, and advocate for a healthier future for [the] neighborhoods," from their vision statement.
They’ve been working with an engineer on the design, but are open to additional input from Build Brigades! Attention future architects- this is YOUR time.
Designs for the greenhouse project include:
On November 21st (day of the Michigan game) Tena and Tess will be traveling to the site to work from 9-1pm and are looking for people to help on that day so if you're in the area, please contact them! Lunch will be provided :)
Interested but are going to the game?
Over the next two months there will be other work sessions on Saturdays- the next one is December 5th.
The project is set to be completed in June, so more work sessions will be held in the spring!
Below are a few renderings of what the greenhouse will look like.
Co-founder of the Panzi Foundation USA & Associate Professor of Human Development and Family Studies at PSU Altoona
If you couldn't join us last week, that's a shame.
We were extemely fortunate to have Dr. Lee Ann De Reus as a guest at our general body meeting. Dr. De Reus is a scholar-activist, maintaining a blog as she travels regularly to Panzi Hospital in eastern DR Congo to conduct research, develop programs for rape survivors, and inform her advocacy work in the U.S. She co-leads annual field experiences for PSU students to Rwanda and Mozambique. Dr. De Reus is a 2009 Carl Wilkens Fellow and the recipient of numerous awards from Penn State University in recognition of exemplary teaching and in honor of her commitment to global service and outreach.
She spoke about the Panzi Foundation, which she co-founded with Dr. Denis Mukwege, the head surgeon and gynecologist of Panzi hospital and has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize seven times- no big deal. The foundation supports the Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
It recognized for its efforts to end the stigma associated with women suffering from sexual abuse, assault, and rape. The foundation as been recognized by numerous entities including the New York Times.
Click here to read more about Dr. Mukwege's countless recognitions and achievements.
Dr. De Reus' daughter, Arianna, also attended the meeting. She is no longer an active member of Global Brigades, however she was during her time in college. Like her mother, Arianna strives to make big changes but in regards to national security. Since she was 10 years old, De Reus has been volunteering in developing countries, where she has seen how poverty affects national security. She has been accepted to intern with the National Defense University soon- congrats Arianna!
Because I can only attempt to lay out everything that this dynamic duo is up to, you should check out Dr. De Reus' TEDxPSU talk, Daring to Make a Difference for Congo.
We look forward to having more incredible guest speakers this year!
Now fundraising comes in light, medium, and dark roasts...
In an effort to help members fundraise for brigades, while also boosting the economies of communities we work with, Global Brigades partnered up with Stone Creek Coffee to create Cafe Holistico!
During the Conference for Campus Chairpersons in Milwaukee, Wisconsin several weeks ago, Eli (our PSU Campus Chairperson) traveled to meet with other Chairpersons and had the opportunity to tour the Stone Creek Coffee Cupping Lab. Stone Creek Coffee is one of the partners we are working with on this fundraiser, specifically for wholesale coffee products. They roast the dried beans imported from our partnering communities and package them for sale and shipment.
This coffee is really cool (not literally) because communities which produce this coffee are getting some substantial increases in profit. In comparison to Fair Trade USA, our communities will be earning 300% more revenue by working with us. Normally they would only be earning $1-$1.25 per pound of coffee, but now they are earning $4 per pound.
How you can fundraise for your brigade:
Buying wholesale coffee from Global Brigades. One 5 lb. bag is $47.50, there is a minimum order of 3 bags. Thus the minimum investment is $142.50. You can sell that coffee for any price point that you decide on. Each pound of coffee can brew ~32 eight ounce cups.
If you've ever bought Girl Scout cookies, you get the gist. The wholesale price for one bag is $10.50 and you can sell it for whatever you want. It's recommended that you sell each bag for around $16 a bag because what most competitors sell for. That is a hypothetical profit of $4.50 a bag.
Get back $5 for every bag that you would receive monthly, so $60 profit per year- a great gift to family, friends, or yourself if you love coffee!
Log on to Cafe Holistico's website to purchase!
Click here for more strategies! And happy fundraising :)
About the Author
My name is Alana Mazzei and I'm the Webmaster for the Campus Council Eboard! I am assisted by Joseph Clark who also is the Social/PR chairperson of Medical/Dental, and the GB photographer, Harvey Li. We would love to hear about your experiences with Global Brigades at Penn State!