Thanks to The Regence Foundation, Feet First is now able to fund many walking programs in southeast Seattle!
The Regence foundation has just awarded Feet First a comparably large grant! Feet First was selected to receive the foundation’s annual transformation grant award of $20,000 for walking projects in Seattle’s Southeast community. Considering how dangerous it is for pedestrians in general, this couldn’t have come at a better time.
Posted by Megan RisleyMay 25, 2011
Feet First’s plans for using this money include incorporating more walking (and all its health benefits) into transportation, recreation and community needs in the Southeast Seattle area. Just how Feet First will facilitate this will involve researching the use of the current infrastructure, utilizing the walking audits as more than mere data sources, but as actual tools to help improve how people use space and time, and developing more ways to measure progress in the area of walkability, all the while inviting the community into the process.
This grant will provide funds specifically for an Americorps staff person and create a social marketing campaign to not only spread the word (as social media can do), but find new connections with other organizations in the business of sustainability and develop existing ones. Feet First plans to grow a network of Neighborhood Walking Ambassadors (NWA), that is, people trained to lead walks around various communities to promote health and care for our environment. One specific tool Feet First has in mind is an interactive walking map – a guide around the city’s footpaths and sidewalks will show encourage people that ‘hoofing it’ from one place to another really isn’t as hard as it sounds!
Finally, Feet First intends to grow the age-old concept of story-telling as a way to share information and experiences walking. It sounds simple, but it’s not simplistic. People learn best through stories or parables, and more often remember what they gained from a story (be it an emotional experience, moral lesson or factual data piece) than they do from textbooks. Story-telling, then, is an effective way to spread the word about feet!