In 2018, re:TH!NK updated the mission statement and logo, worked on Safe Routes to Parks audits, educated youth about healthy food choices, partnered with the Sacred Heart Neighborhood Association, conducted Festival Scans, and finally reached its goal of tobacco-free parks in Oshkosh!
Along with our updated mission statement, each team now has their very own team logo! Team members gave input on final selections from a cohesive color palate. As re:TH!NK grows and evolves, so can our teams and their logos.
A big thank you to Melissa Pingel, a member of the re:TH!NK Alcohol Action Team, for all her work this summer. Melissa completed three alcohol environmental scans this summer helping the team ensure all festivals and events were covered. With the results from these scans, the team meets with event organizers to discuss how we can collaborate to ensure that alcohol is being served and sold in a safe way. Some of the recommendations from these meetings include requiring all attendees over the age of 21 who will be consuming alcohol to wear wristbands and providing CHEERS responsible beverage server trainings to event staff. Thanks to Melissa for all her work and dedication to the team!
The Active Communities Team presented the concept of Safe Routes to Parks (SRTP) to the Stevens Park Neighborhood Association at their September association meeting. Team members explained what SRTP is all about, how safety and access to a park can be improved by completing a SRTP audit, why making it easier and safer to walk and bike to a park is important for health, and how residents can be involved in the process.
The association is interested in working with the team to gather residents to complete a SRTP audit and provide feedback to the team from the auditors perspective. The team looks forward to working with Stevens Park in spring of 2019.
Habitat for Humanity of Oshkosh exists to provide a world where everyone has a decent place to live. An independent affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, Habitat Oshkosh is a champion of affordable housing through the simple concept of bringing people together to create meaningful change.
“Habitat’s mission is to bring people together to build homes, hope and community,” said Jeff Potts, executive director. “What we’ve found is if we focus on bringing people together it’s so much more efficient to build (or fix) homes and that allows us to create a sense of community. Once you feel that sense of community, it gives everyone hope for a better future. That’s what we are here to do.”
While most people are familiar with Habitat’s home-ownership program (based on building and selling homes with a zero percent interest rate to qualified families) the organization also works to revitalize neighborhoods through strategic partnerships. Working with partners such as re:TH!NK Winnebago County, Habitat is launching a program called Rock the Block (also with Greater Oshkosh Healthy Neighborhoods Inc. and the City of Oshkosh) to provide affordable repairs and improvements to properties in the Sacred Heart Neighborhood Association. The program seeks to connect neighbors to make literally connect and build a stronger sense of community.
Oshkosh’s first Rock the Block will take place in Spring of 2019. Habitat for Humanity and Social and Place Connectedness Team are discussing together to increase in-person social connectedness in Oshkosh.
For more information contact Habitat at (920) 235-3535 or RockTheBlock@HabitatOshkosh.org.
What’s better than spotlighting one re:TH!NK member? Well, shining the spotlight on two of course! That’s why we couldn’t recognize Trish Nau, Parks Planner from East Central WI Regional Planning Commission without also recognizing Pete Ehlert, Community Programs Officer with Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office for their work with the Active Communities team’s Safe Routes to Parks audits. The team has been working on making it easier and safer for residents to walk and bike to their local park and both Trish and Pete have gone the extra mile to help set the team up for future success. By sharing important resources like parks and routes audit tools, lending their expertise to create summary reports of the audit findings, and working with other team members and community partners, the Active Communities team is now moving into the next phase of their action plan. Thank you to this dynamic duo!