Local organizations doing sustainability work

Open Space Preservation: Greater Worcester Land Trust, a non-profit organization founded in 1987, works to strategically preserve and then manage open space in Worcester and surrounding towns.

Food Justice: Regional Environmental Council is a non-profit grassroots environmental justice organization founded in 1972. REC works on building healthy, sustainable and just communities. REC’s principal Food Justice Program is aimed at creating access to food for Worcester’s most food insecure communities through tending community gardens and associated youth and leadership development, selling produce at the farmer markets, and related activities.

Green Jobs and Environmental Justice: Worcester Roots Project, a non-profit organization, was founded in 2001, with the goal of addressing the environmental justice concerns of lead in the soil (from the widely used lead paint prior to the 1978 ban). Currently, WRP supports worker co-operatives, promotes the development of green jobs, prioritizes youth empowerment and runs the following projects: Toxic Soil Busters, Youth In Charge, Worcester Energy Barnraisers, as well as Incubation and Training Collective.

Urban Forest: Worcester Tree Initiative, formed in January 2009 in the wake of the urban forest devastation due to the invasive Asian Longhorned Beetle, uses a community based approach to plant and care for trees, educate and train tree stewards, as well as emphasize and educate about trees’ contribution to the environment, environmental justice and quality of life.

Advocacy related to Food Justice and Active Community: Worcester Food & Active Living Policy Council is a coalition of organizations working to foster a healthy and just food system and active community environment in Worcester via public education, policy advocacy and collaboration. The coalition is comprised of a Steering Committee, Working Groups, and Members. The current working groups are: WalkBike Worcester ~ Urban Agriculture ~ SNAP ~ Early Childhood Obesity Working Group.

While not comprehensive, this list provides a sample of a rich civil society and engaged citizenry of our city.