Robert Finnell has spent countless hours donating his time and energy to help keep San Francisco’s waterfront free of trash and graffiti. After intially starting his work in his own neighborhood, Robert soon joined the SF Graffiti Watch Program and began reaching out further into the community. He now helps to maintain the area surrounding the base of the Bay Bridge and its surrounding neighborhoods.
“Robert (Bob) Finnell has been relentless at removing graffiti and picking up trash at the base of the Bay Bridge in our South Beach neighborhood. He has worked with the DPW, the SFPD, CHP, DPW, our neighborhood organization, and others to make sure that graffiti is removed as soon as it is put up,” said resident Katy Liddell.
“Bob goes out every single day of the week to inspect the foot of Bryant Street (onramp to Bay Bridge), the Harrison offramp, and other surrounding areas. We have a homeless problem here as well, and Bob has to deal with getting yelled at and having rocks thrown at him as he goes on his daily rounds. But, nothing stops him.”
Congratulations to the 2010 Neighborhood Youth Leadership Award winner Mitzi Chavez for her work as a youth mentor, educator and peer leader.
“She is truly a positive role model. Her intellectual curiosity and intelligence, open-heartedness, and her communication skills are three of her greatest attributes. This combination shows through in her work both in and outside of Peer Resources. Whether a mentor or an educator, Mitziâ€™s welcoming nature and true passion for helping others regardless of their diverse needs and backgrounds has had a great impact in many lives,” said resident Sarah Brant.
Congratulations to the Taraval Merchants Association for winning the 2010 NEN Award for the Best Merchant Association, for their continuing efforts to improve Taraval Street and the surrounding
Sunset District.”They have attracted new members, started new events, sustained past successes, and secured grant money to help their corridor.
“They have opened themselves up to the revitalization process working with myself, without reservation and they have welcomed all of my ideas and input. As a lifetime resident of this neighborhood, I truly know they care and want the association to continue its six-decade long presence in the neighborhood,” said Taraval Commercial Corridor Manager Ashley Summers.
The San Francisco Department of Public Works’s Deputy Director, Mohammed Nuru, was awarded the Most Empowering City Employee Award for his dedication to San Francisco’s neighborhoods and years of work in preserving and maintaining San Francisco’s urban space. “Mr. Nuru is the go-to person in the City of SF for infrastructure projects. If you need a fence, sign or bus stop fix, Mr. Nuru can help you get it done,” said SF resident Gillian Gillette. Check out the video below to catch a few words with Mohammed after the ceremony.
Mayor Gavin Newsom today announced the winners of the Community Challenge Grant Program (CCG), which provides matching grants to local residents, businesses, non-profits and other community groups to make physical improvements to their neighborhoods.
The CCG Program has awarded 28 grants totaling $577,656. The bulk of the CCG awards continue to be for permeable landscaping, public artwork, graffiti/litter abatement, community gardens and gathering spaces, equitably covering all areas of the City. The funding for CCG awards come from city businesses who voluntarily designate one percent of the business tax they already pay.
The CCG focuses on projects that directly engage residents and businesses in creating green spaces, gathering places, public art, and other neighborhood amenities by featuring and applying ecologically friendly practices. The program is an important tool for enabling communities to take the lead in conducting small scale improvements in their own communities and neighborhoods.
“The Community Challenge Grants promote innovation in our neighborhoods and encourage communities to take pride in their streets,” said Mayor Newsom. “These innovative projects leverage public and private dollars to get communities working together toward making San Francisco a cleaner, greener, and safer city for everyone.”
“We are inspired by the twenty-eight innovative projects awarded this cycle,” said City Administrator Ed Lee. “The Community Challenge Grant Program works best when community groups are empowered to take charge to improve and green their neighborhoods. These projects continue to make San Francisco a cleaner, greener place to live and grow.”
The CCG partnership with the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Urban Watershed Management Program is a critical part of the project. Through this partnership, grants were awarded to six community projects including implementing environmentally sustainable technologies for sidewalks and infrastructure and managing local rainwater in schools and parks. Â The awarded amount totals $102,600.
“Each of these community-driven projects will help the entire City to better manage stormwater,” said SFPUC General Manager Ed Harrington. “They demonstrate the importance of acting locally and are vital to the health of our watersheds.”
Community Challenge Grant Program Fall 2010 Grant Award Recipients
1. Jose Ortega Elementary School PTA
Project: Community Art
2. Precita Valley Neighbors, sponsored by SF Parks Trusts