Sustainability Leadership Awards: Campfire Stories

For over ten years, the Sustainability Leadership Awards have assembled local experts, community members, and multiple sectors to recognize the work and efforts of the region’s leaders. This year, we bring the power of movement making into the gala setting by introducing a playful, immersive event theme: CAMPFIRE STORIES. S2 promises a dynamic, interactive evening in which you will immerse in discussion about the region’s sustainability practices and opportunities, and leave inspired to further engage this work in your own life.

You can expect an evening filled with Seattle game changers, incredible stories, live music, art, food, drinks, a silent auction, friends, and of course memories that will last a lifetime!

Bhutanese Community Members at Cedar River Watershed

Allan Kafley named a Sustainability Leader!

Congratulations Allan Kafley!

Allan Kafley at Mt Si. Photo Credit: Allan Kafley / ECOSS.

Despite the desire to connect with their environment, immigrant and refugee communities often face language, geographic and lifestyle barriers that limit their access to outdoors experiences. Allan Kafley saw this need within his own community and took the opportunity to spearhead the New Arrivals program in 2014. Allan currently leads this and other programs as one of ECOSS’ Multicultural Outreach Managers.

Tours to the Cedar River Watershed are an excellent opportunity to show new arrivals the source of their drinking water. Photo Credit: ECOSS.

The New Arrivals program provides education, services and experiences to immigrants and refugees newly-arriving in the greater Seattle area. Crucially, the program generates outreach in collaboration with the communities it serves.

For this pivotal role and for being a leader within Puget Sound’s Bhutanese community, Sustainable Seattle honored Allan with a Sustainability Leadership Award!

Until the age of 19, Allan grew up in a refugee camp, where he was not afforded the privilege of self-determination. This changed in 2008 when Allan came to Seattle as one of the city’s first Bhutanese refugees. Spurred by his father’s stories of Bhutanese wilderness exploration, Allan sought out opportunities to engage with the environment and other refugees. He subsequently helped found the Bhutanese Community Resource Center in 2010, which hosts cultural events and connects Bhutanese refugees with resources, education and experiences.

Allan connects the Bhutanese refugee community with opportunities to give back to their environment. Photo Credit: Allan Kafley / ECOSS.

Joining ECOSS in 2013, Allan has since built awareness of healthy fishing along the Duwamish River, led outdoors trips throughout Washington and improved the environmental health of underserved communities throughout the greater Seattle area. Check out some of his recent projects and features:

Creating opportunities for immigrants and refugees to give back to nature

What does camping mean for the Bhutanese community?

Promoting outdoors access via public transit

New Arrivals program featured as a social innovation

Congratulations Allan Kafley on the award! Your leadership in centering equity in environmental programs is truly inspiring. Join ECOSS in celebrating his accomplishments at Sustainable Seattle’s Campfire Stories.

Learn more about New Arrivals

Super Hero on Staff!

Congratulations to ECOSS Community Outreach Associate, Sophorn Sim. She’s a finalist for Sustainable Seattle’s Sustainability Hero Award.

We are thrilled Sophorn’s commitment and energy to building resilient immigrant communities through environmental education and experiences are being recognized. Click to read more about her work.

This year’s award focuses on an individual who has built bridges or forged alliances with underrepresented members of our community.

The winner will be revealed on March 3rd at the Sustainability Leadership Awards Dinner and Fundraiser.