Philadelphia Water Department has an innovative way to connect with civic organizations. It’s a program called Soak it Up Adoption and it is designed to bring the community together for a common cause. The Soak It Up Adoption Program provides grants to civic organizations to help maintain the beauty and functionality of green storm water infrastructure (GSI) in Philadelphia’s neighborhoods. Adoptees will assume responsibility for the care of one or more activities including: weekly maintenance visits, reporting of activities on site and getting the community involved in a coordinated effort toward sustainability. The civic organizations that are eligible must have a 501c3 status, a minimum of one full time paid staff member and must host regular community meetings or devise another way to implement community updates and member notification.
In addition, all adoptees are required to participate in a training session and site tour with representatives from Philadelphia Water (PWD) & Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC). Communicate with PWD and PEC as needed in person, over the phone and via e-mail. Maintain each of their adopted green infrastructure sites a minimum of once a week. Submit a reporting form for each of the sites being maintained after you’ve performed weekly maintenance. Submit a photo of each of your adoption sites once per quarter. Submit a quarterly budget report detailing how your organization is utilizing the grant to support your adopted sites. Communicate regularly with PWD & PEC about your adopted sites as well as any questions or problems you may experience.
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