2010 Year End Giving and ECOSS!

Show your support for ECOSS this holiday season!
The holidays are upon us – the season of giving, of community, and of celebration. This year we are asking you to please consider ECOSS when you are making your year-end gifts. Or, make the decision to donate to ECOSS for the very first time. Whatever contribution you choose to make will be put toward providing high quality and innovative education as well as technical assistance programs to diverse businesses and communities in the Puget Sound region.

Listed below are some of our 2010 accomplishments we’re pleased to share with you:

  • We launched our work Powerful Neighborhoods program with Seattle City Light. This program offers free installation of energy efficient and water saving fixtures to low-income, elderly and non-English speaking families in South Seattle.
  • Our team has helped over 3,000 families save nearly 9,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide, and saved customers over $1,000,000 in energy costs. This program has been so successful it was written up in The New York Times.
  • We hired 17 employees from 11 countries to carry out the Powerful Neighborhoods program. Added to our long time multi-cultural outreach team, ECOSS is now conducting outreach in 18 languages!
  • ECOSS launched a series of stormwater management workshops, being offered across the state. These valuable courses provide business owners practical solutions to addressing new stormwater permit requirements and prevent pollution.

Generous contributions from people like you made all of this possible in 2010!

Please donate or send your check to ECOSS at 605 S. Riverside Dr. Seattle, WA 98108.

Why ECOSS? Why Right Now?
ECOSS does a lot of work, has many programs, and offers a wide variety of resources and services. We know it can be difficult to describe just what we do around here, and we think this video helps do just that. Please take a moment and see for yourself all the ways ECOSS is helping in the community and the environment. Watch the ECOSS video, Opening Doors.

Because ECOSS is a 501(c)3 organization, donations are fully tax deductible. As you do your year-end giving and tax planning, we hope you will consider making good use of the income tax charitable deduction. Your year-end gift can significantly reduce your income taxes while providing meaningful support for ECOSS! Win-win!

In Gratitude
We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and has plans for a memorable and exciting December. We are grateful for our members, donors, supporters and everyone interested in and working toward creating a cleaner, healthier, economically thriving Puget Sound. THANK YOU!

Tina Stotz, ECOSS Board Vice President, talks about Powerful Neighborhoods

If you were at our Annual Dinner last Thursday, I know you remember hearing Tina Stotz speak! After two of our Powerful Neighborhoods Staff members, Moges and Ramiro, took the stage, Tina got up and talked about the team’s overall successes. I asked her for a copy of her talking points – I am still impressed!

The ECOSS Powerful Neighborhoods started in March 2010, and is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

ECOSS has 17 employees from 11 countries including Vietnam, Eretria, Philippines, Hong Kong, Ethiopia, Korea, El Salvador, Mexico, Fiji, Cambodia, and the United States. They speak 20 languages including Vietnamese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Fukanese, Taiwanese, Tagalog, Amharic, Oromo, Kiswahili, Korean, Spanish, Fijian, Hindi, Punjabi, Cambodian, French, Dutch, German, and Japanese.

Since program inception they have served 2447 homes in Columbia City, Rainier Valley, Rainier Beach, Beacon Hill, Skyway, Georgetown, and South Park.  The target residences are low-income, elderly, and non-English speaking residents.  More than 55% of the people served are non-English speaking.

Services provided by this team include conducting a short home energy audit, testing toilets for leaks, monitoring water heater operations, inspecting dryer vents for inefficiencies and fire hazards, educating clients on more energy efficient practices, and installing energy efficient light bulbs.

Through October 23rd the team has installed 61,175 energy efficient light bulbs which will conserve 17,800,000 Kwh – the amount of energy needed to light 1100 average America homes for one year.  These conservation efforts will save clients a total of $960,000.  Seattle City Light will save nearly $500,000 and more than 12,500 metric tons of CO2.

This program is slated to end on December 15th, but we are hopeful to get additional grant monies that will allow us to continue into 2011.  The dollars we’re asking you to donate tonight will go directly to support our multicultural programs to do additional outreach to communities of all colors across Puget Sound.  We would like to continue to put this multi-talented, multi-lingual team to work on a number of other issues, from storm water to sustainable business practices to environmental health.  The dollars you pledge tonight will support ECOSS and this team and keep green jobs and effective energy conservation efforts alive in our city and the Puget Sound Region.

Amen! Thanks again, Tina!

Powerful Neighborhoods Program reaches important milestone

Congratulations are in order! ECOSS’ Powerful Neighborhoods Team surpassed the milestone of completing installations of over 2000 homes in South Seattle in early October. Thanks to the work of our team, 2000 families in South Seattle have received free assistance that will lower their energy bills, as well as reduce Seattle’s carbon emissions for years to come. Overall the ECOSS and other outreach teams have reduced over 7000 metric tons of CO2, saved customers an estimated $1,000,00, and saved Seattle City Light over $800,000 in energy savings.

ECOSS For Homes programs and resources

ECOSS’ For Homes program has been around since 1996, during which time we’ve worked with non-native-English-speaking communities,  teaching families about “green” cleaning, recycling, water and energy conservation, and health risks associated with common household cleaning products.  The program has reached over 7,500 families through community group presentations, local fairs and festivals, and other neighborhood-oriented events.

Our outreach team provides great resources to our clients, like green cleaning kits.  It looks like we might need to update our own information after this New York Times article was published, talking about this list created by the City of San Francisco. The list contains more than 1,000 products that have met stringent standards for health, safety and environmental sustainability (this is a bigger deal than most lists because of its comprehensive nature and because it was created by a government group rather than a commercial one). Notice that Cleaning Products is the largest category in the list.

Powerful Neighborhoods Update

Since partnering with Seattle City Light’s Powerful Neighborhoods Program, we have expanded our language capabilities, our staff, and our reach. We schedule home visits, provide translations, and deliver and install energy efficient fixtures at no cost.

Take a look at our figures from the program:

Number of homes served (actual): 1,145

Number of bulbs installed: 36,725

Number of kilowatt hours saved: 13,588,250 kwh