Ty Swenson
Sustainable West Seattle Green Incubator Grant Program winners (from left to right) Ranette Iding with Delridge Grocery, Stu Hennessey with the DIY Bike Program and Tamsen Spengler with the West Seattle Time Bank. While you might think Microsoft provided grant funding based on the accidental branding in this photo, it was actually the Coho Team of Windermere Agents who stepped up to help out.

And the SWS Green Incubator Grant Program winners are ...

Sustainable West Seattle, unable to just let one great local green idea win, spread the love to three causes on March 18 in announcing their Green Incubator Grant Program winners.

The winner of the big grant on the night was Delridge Grocery (with a recent name change from the Delridge Produce Co-op), recieving a $1000 grant to help bring a co-op market to North Delridge where they will sell “nothing but wholesome, affordable local food.” The funds will be used to help mobilize and coordinate their membership drive.

Chas Redmond with SWS said Delridge Grocery was the top pick based on community survey feedback and board deliberations for it's potential in "“meeting community need, meeting economic growth opportunity, being sustainable and being doable in the sense that this was a kick start that would actually help.”

The $1000 grant was made possible by the Coho Team of Windermere Agents.

The giving kept on going with SWS finding an additional $1000 in internal funding to split between two other worthwhile causes: The West Seattle Time Bank and DIY Bike Program.

Redmond said the West Seattle Time Bank "is a project that needs some kick starting, but once it gets going, of all the projects we thought it was the most amenable to direct partnership with Sustainable West Seattle."

As for DIY Bikes, he admitted "it did feel weird to give ourselves a grant for something (Stu Hennessey, member at SWS is spearheading the project), but we think in cooperation with the tool library and with the youth here in West Seattle that we can create something that is going to be a job generator for kids."

Details on each program are found below:

Ranette Iding and Delridge Grocery membership drive outreach
Iding is a founding member of the Delridge Produce Cooperative, who hope to bring a co-op market to North Delridge where they will sell “nothing but wholesome, affordable local food.”

The Delridge corridor is considered a “food desert,” where no healthy food options are available within walking distance and large grocery stores refuse to come in due to a lack of population.

DPC is currently in the planning and fundraising phase, and Iding said the grant money will be used to mobilize membership drive outreach, including translation services for Delridge residents who may read in different languages. They also hope to purchase accounting software to better track fundraising and membership.

Tamsen Spengler, Karen Sison and the West Seattle Time Bank
Spengler and Sison are part of a “steering committee” that has been ironing out the details to create a West Seattle Time Bank. Spengler said time banks are based on the “old community concept of neighbors helping neighbors.” They are defined by TimeBanks.org as a way to “nurture and expand a movement that promotes equality and builds caring community economies through inclusive exchange of time and talent.” In other words, if you are an excellent carpenter and help a neighbor repair a deck you get to “bank” the time you spent on the project. If a few weeks down the road you realize you need to bake five cakes for a fundraiser, you can tap the accomplished baker who is part of the bank to help you out, spending accrued time for the service.

Spengler and Sison said the grant money will be used to create a password-protected website and time management database to bring a West Seattle Time Bank to reality.

Stu Hennessey (owner of Alki Bike and Board) and the DIY Bike program
Hennessey has been a part of the DubSea Bikes movement in White Center that provides free bike repair services on Sundays, and hopes to expand upon that idea by creating a non-profit bike shop in the Delridge corridor. He said he plans to use the grant funding to purchase two bike repair work stations that will be housed at the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center available for tool library users. Eventually, he hopes to bring in area youth to learn the ins-and-outs of bike repair. Using donated bikes that may not be in working order, the kids will be able to bring a bike back to life for their own use and repair others to be sold. The revenue will go back into the program and participants will learn a marketable skill set in the process.

“I do realize this will be competition to my own business,” Hennessey said to a round of laughter, but his passion to help transform Delridge into a stronger biking culture trumps any concerns over profit.

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