By Rob Moir
ACE was one of the first environmental organizations to put community in front of environment. In the early '90s, environmental organizations spoke about the need to better address environmental justice in urban Boston.
Many such conversations would close in on how "we" can get "them" to be more engaged with "our" issues, and the environmental issues being addressed at the time were hardly priority issues for people of the urban core.
ACE is important to me because it begins with communities, communities like Roxbury and Chelsea who have had to suffer more than their fair share of environmental and social inequities. In ACE communities, where too often one can not see the soil for the soot, joining the local garden club will not suffice.
I support ACE today because youth and volunteers of all ages are actively involved in addressing environmental assaults to their neighborhoods. ACE does the spade work of shoveling the unmentionables, the heavy lifting for getting hazardous waste cleaned up, even citizen-ticketing buses belching diesel exhaust onto students going to and from school.
The pride in each incremental step forward gives me more than just hope - clearly progress is being made. Community-based democratic actions that are inclusive of many voices take much time. I am hopeful when I see people returning to the work day after day, meeting after meeting. The vision-goals for better environments that ACE has developed are encouraging and the competencies and tenacity that ACE goes about achieving such goals are awesome!
To future generations, I'd like to pass on better communities, more healthy environments, and ACE's can-do if done together approach to problem solving. ACE does much with little because of their seamless connections with communities.
There is no better group to make a contribution to for furthering environmental justice in Boston - and if you make a gift, it will go to work immediately. ACE tackles pressing environmental challenges efficiently and with energy. Be sure to check ACE out today!
Rob is the Director of the Ocean River Institute