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Opportunities

NYCommons Request for Neighborhood Collaborators

22 January 2016


This is an invitation from NYCommons to collaborate on workshops to help New Yorkers learn to  protect and expand publicly owned and controlled land and buildings in our neighborhoods. NYCommons is a collaboration between Common Cause/NY, the Community Development Project (CDP) at the Urban Justice Center, and 596 Acres, Inc. The next phase of our work includes focusing on 2-3 neighborhoods to pilot workshops where we spotlight means to participate effectively in current land use processes, as well as challenges shared by many community groups working around local land use struggles.


Contact.

Prudence Katze, Common Cause, Inc., pkatze@commoncause.org, (212) 691-6421

Background. We have already spent a year conducting research through meetings with over 100 organizations and community activists across NYC. Through our initial phase of outreach and research, we identified five types of public assets that present important opportunities for public participation and community input in many communities:


  1. Vacant public land and community gardens on land owned by City agencies and State Authorities;

  2. Post offices;

  3. Libraries;

  4. New York City Housing Authority campuses and other property; and

  5. Publicly-owned waterfront property.            

We now invite collaborators from NYC neighborhoods to join us as co-hosts of workshops focused on helping to foster an understanding of what neighbors can do to ensure that public assets continue to be a resource for their communities. If you have some or all of these property types in your community, NYCommons would like to collaborate with you to help local residents learn how decisions about these properties are made and how residents can participate in the process.

Formal organizations and groups of individuals are invited to apply. We encourage you to partner with other organizers in your neighborhood as hosts of these workshops. Through our individual organizations and our collaborative work so far as NYCommons, we have developed a deep network of New Yorkers focusing their advocacy on public real estate assets, land use, housing rights, community participation, and neighborhood-based advocacy. You can see a list of them here; let us know if you would like to be connected to anyone listed as a potential co-collaborator.


LOGISTICS

Compensation. NYCommons will provide food and facilitation for workshops, as well as funding for workshop outreach. In addition, collaborators will receive a minimum unrestricted stipend of $500 (final amount dependent on number of collaborators per neighborhood), which can be used to compensate individual participants or to compensate an organization as a whole.

Timeline. Collaborators must commit to a planning meeting with the NYCommons team, to be held between April 1 and April 15, 2016, and to co-hosting two public workshops in June and July.

Collaborator Applications. We encourage collaborations between groups and individuals who are doing diverse work in the same area. Application questions are listed below, in Appendix A. Collaborator applications are due Friday, February 12, 2016 at 5:59pm. Please email your proposal to Prudence Katze at pkatze@commoncause.org. Selections will be made by March 5, 2016.


APPENDIX A.

APPLICATION QUESTIONS

Main contact.

Name.
Organizational affiliation, if any.
Phone.
Email.
Website, if any.
Twitter, if any.
How did you find out about this collaboration opportunity?

Your team.

List the members of your team. Include organizations and individuals. For each, include:

Name.
Organizational affiliation, if any.
Phone.
Email.
Website, if any.
Twitter, if any.

Through our individual organizations and our collaborative work so far as NYCommons, we have developed a deep network of New Yorkers focusing their advocacy on public real estate assets, land use, housing rights, community participation, and neighborhood-based advocacy. You can see a list of them here; let us know if you would like to be connected to anyone listed as a potential co-collaborator.

Your neighborhood.

  1. Draw or describe the boundaries of the neighborhood you work in. Your neighborhood can be as small as one block or as large as one borough, but keep in mind that we want to make sure that the team we assemble is well-positioned to reach deeply into the area of focus.  

  2. Which of the following does your neighborhood have:

    1. Vacant public land

    2. Community gardens on land owned by City agencies and State Authorities

    3. Post offices that might close

    4. Libraries

    5. New York City Housing Authority campuses and other property

    6. Publicly-owned waterfront property

Your resources.

  1. List spaces in your neighborhood that you can access for hosting a public workshop.

  2. List public officials that your team has a relationship with, including NYC City Council Members and Community Boards. Describe the nature of the relationships and, if applicable, how you have worked on any land use challenges together.

Your reason.
In under 500 words (one page, single spaced), describe why you want to invite the NYCommons team to collaborate with you in a workshop series focused on how the community can impact the outcome and decisions around public assets in their neighborhood, and the development of training modules and materials to build local organizing around public asset disposition. How will this series contribute to your overall goals? What do you hope you and your team will learn? What do you hope you and your team will be able to teach?


APPENDIX B.


A collaboration between 596 Acres,  the Urban Justice Center and Common Cause New York, NYCommons seeks to provide local stakeholders with the tools they need to impact decisions around the future of their parks, libraries, community gardens, and other publicly held spaces. By creating accessible information about who controls these public assets, how decisions about these assets are made, and how members of the public can influence these choices, NYCommons will help communities raise their voices to ensure that local people will continue to enjoy the benefits of shared space for generations to come.


Why This Project?

Vibrant public spaces strengthen communities and improve the quality of life in neighborhoods. They provide opportunities for learning, health and recreation, as well as connecting with friends and neighbors.   But all too often, publicly owned spaces are sold or taken out of public control with very little meaningful public input. Publicly owned buildings and parking lots may also have unused air rights that create opportunities for development that people may not realize exist until it’s too late for the community to have a voice in how those development rights are used. Our project seeks to break this pattern and give local people a chance to have a say in the decisions that affect their communities. NYCommons will help reframe the public dialogue so the long term, inherent benefits of public spaces being maintained for the public interest are not overlooked in the decision-making process.


APPENDIX C

NYC groups working on the commons (who might want to collaborate with you)

CITYWIDE


Organization

Website

Alliance for a Greater New York

http://www.alignny.org/

Asian Americans for Equality

http://www.aafe.org/

Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development

http://www.anhd.org/

ATLAS: DIY (Developing Immigrant Youth)

http://www.atlasdiy.org/

Chinese Staff and Worker's Association

http://cswa.org/

Citizen Action of NY

http://citizenactionny.org/

Citizens Committee for NYC

http://www.citizensnyc.org/

Citizens Defending Libraries

http://citizensdefendinglibraries.blogspot.com/

City Club of NY

http://cityclubny.org/

City Parks Foundation

http://www.cityparksfoundation.org/

Coalition of Block & Community Leaders

https://www.facebook.com/BlocksforBlocks

Community Voices Heard

http://www.cvhaction.org/

DAMAYAN Migrant Workers Association

http://www.damayanmigrants.org/

DRUM - Desis Rising Up and Moving

http://www.drumnyc.org/

Green City Force

http://www.greencityforce.org/

Green Guerillas

http://www.greenguerillas.org/

GreenThumb

http://www.greenthumbnyc.org/

Grow NYC

http://www.grownyc.org/

Historic Districts Council

http://hdc.org/

Make the Road New York

http://www.maketheroad.org/

Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance

http://waterfrontalliance.org/

Minkwon Center for Community Action

http://minkwon.org/

Neighborhood Plaza Partnership

http://neighborhoodplazapartnership.org/

New York City Community Garden Coalition

http://nyccgc.org/

New York City Community Land Initiative

http://nyccli.org/

New York City Park Advocates

http://nycparkadvocates.org/

New York Restoration Project

https://www.nyrp.org

New Yorkers for Parks

http://www.ny4p.org/

NYC Environmental Justice Alliance

http://www.nyc-eja.org/

NYC Labor Council for Latin American Advancement

http://www.lclaa.org/new-york

NYC Real Estate Investment Cooperative

http://nycreic.com/

Partnerships for Parks

http://www.cityparksfoundation.org/partnerships-for-parks/

Picture the Homeless

http://picturethehomeless.org/

Public Space Party

http://www.publicspaceparty.org/

Right to the City-NYC

http://righttothecity.org/

Sarapis

https://sarapis.org/#

Solidarity NYC

http://solidaritynyc.org/

Streetwise & Safe

http://streetwiseandsafe.org/

Trees New York

http://www.treesny.org/

Urban Homestead Assistance Board (UHAB)

http://www.uhab.org/

VOCAL-NY

http://www.vocal-ny.org/

International Federation of Settlements

http://www.ifsnetwork.org/

Trust for Public Land

https://www.tpl.org/

Ugnayan

http://www.ugnayanyouth.org/about-us/






BRONX


Organization

Neighborhood

Website

African Communities Together


http://www.africans.us/

Banana Kelly

Hunts Point / Longwood

http://www.bkcianyc.org/

Bissell Garden

Wakefield

http://bisselgardens.org/

Bronx Green Up (NYBG)


http://www.nybg.org/green_up/

Bronx Land Trust


http://www.bronxlandtrust.org/

CASA/New Settlement


http://casapower.org/

Friends of Brook Park

South Bronx

http://friendsofbrookpark.org/

Friends of Mosholu Parkland

Norwood / Mosholu / Bedford / Jerome

http://mosholuparkland.wix.com/mosholu

Friends of Van Cortland Park


http://vancortlandt.org/

Friends of Williamsbridge Oval

Norwood

https://www.facebook.com/groups/83607129267/

Hill Street Garden

Melrose

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/6000020001

Knox Gates Neighborhood Association (The COVE)

Norwood

http://www.covebx.org/

La Familia Verde

Crotona / East Tremont / West Farms

http://www.lafamiliaverde.org/

Mothers on the Move

South Bronx

http://mothersonthemove.org/who.html

Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition


http://northwestbronx.org/

Sapna NYC

Westchester Square / Parkchester

http://www.sapnanyc.org/

SoBRO

South Bronx

https://sobro.org/

South Bronx Community Congress

South Bronx

https://www.facebook.com/South-Bronx-Community-Congress-996052360459462/

Sustainable South Bronx

South Bronx

http://www.ssbx.org/

The POINT CDC

Hunts Point

http://thepoint.org/index.php

Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice

South Bronx

http://www.ympj.org/about.html




BROOKLYN


Organization

Neighborhood

Website

Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration

Bedford Stuyvesant

http://www.restorationplaza.org/

Benson Avenue Block Association

Bath Beach / Bensonhurst

http://www.citizensnyc.org/grantee/benson-avenue-block-association-0

BK Rot

Bushwick

http://bkrot.org/

Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy

DUMBO

http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/pages/aboutbbpc

Brooklyn Solid Waste Advisory Board & North Brooklyn Compost


https://www.facebook.com/BrooklynSolidWasteAdvisoryBoard/

Carroll Gardens Neighborhood Assoc

Caroll Gardens

http://carrollgardensbrooklyn.org/

CEC 15 Brooklyn


https://www.facebook.com/CECD15/

Celestial Church Buffalo Center

Weeksville

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3013630007/

Center for Family Life

Sunset Park

http://sco.org/programs/center-for-family-life/

Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation

Cypress Hills

http://www.cypresshills.org/chw/

Dean St - Grant Sq.Block Assoc Crown Heights

Crown Heights

https://deanstgrantsq.wordpress.com/

Eden Learning Garden

Brownsville

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3037750150/

El Puente

Williamsburg

http://elpuente.us/

Eldert Street Garden

Bushwick

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3034130063/

Fifth Avenue Committee

South Brooklyn

http://www.fifthave.org/

Flatbush Tenant Coalition

Flatbush

https://flatbushtenantcoalition.wordpress.com/

Friends of Carroll Park

Caroll Gardens

http://www.carrollparkbrooklyn.org/

Friends of Sunset Park

Sunset Park

http://friendsofsunsetpark-brooklyn.blogspot.com/

FUREE

Carroll Gardens / Gowanus

http://furee.org/

Hooper Street Park

Williamsburg

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3024500028/

Imani Garden

Crown Heights

https://www.nyrp.org/green-spaces/garden-details/imani-community-garden/

Isabahlia Ladies of Elegance Foundation

Brownsville

http://www.isabahlialoefinc.org/

La Casita Verde: 451 Bedford Ave

Williamsburg

http://www.lacasitaverde.nyc/

Maple Street Community Garden

Prospect Lefferts

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3050300072/

Neighbors Together

Ocean Hill / Brownsville / Bedford-Stuyvesant

http://neighborstogether.org/

NHS of East Flatbush

East Flatbush / Flatbush

http://www.nhsofeastflatbush.org/

Open Space Alliance

Williamsburg / Greenpoint

http://osanb.org/

P.S.335 Granville T. Woods Community Garden

Weeksville

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3013560006/

Parents of Wonderful Children

Crown Heights

https://www.facebook.com/POWCcares

Patchen Community Square Garden

Bedford-Stuyvesant

http://www.patchensquare.com/

People for Green Space

Columbia Heights / DUMBO

http://www.savepier6.org/

Phoenix Community Garden

Brownsville

http://www.grownyc.org/openspace/gardens/bk/phoenix

Pratt Area Community Council

Ft Greene / Clinton Hill

http://pacc.publishpath.com/

Prospect Park Alliance

Prospect Park

https://www.prospectpark.org/

Roger That! Garden

Crown Heights

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/3012330001/

Silent Barn

Bushwick

http://silentbarn.org/

Southwest Brooklyn Industrial Development Corp

Sunset Park / Red Hook / Gowanus

http://www.sbidc.org/

St. Nicks Alliance

Williamsburg / Greenpoint

http://stnicksalliance.org/SNA/

UPROSE

Sunset Park

http://uprose.org/

Workers Justice Project


http://workersjustice.org/

Brooklyn Queens Land Trust


http://bqlt.org/

Catholic Migration


http://catholicmigration.org/

University Settlement


http://www.universitysettlement.org/us/?



MANHATTAN


Organization

Neighborhood

Website

After Dark CAT

West Village

http://www.fatcatmusic.org/

Brotherhood/Sister Sol


http://brotherhood-sistersol.org/

CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities


http://caaav.org/

Carrie McCracken Truth Community Garden St Nicholas

Harlem

https://communitygarden.org/find-a-garden/gardens/carrie-mccracken-truce-garden/

Central Park Conservancy


http://www.centralparknyc.org/

CHDC

Chelsea

http://www.clintonhousing.org/

Chelsea Reform Democratic Club

Chelsea

http://www.crdcnyc.org/

Commission on the Public Health System


http://www.cphsnyc.org/cphs/?

Cooper Square

East Village

https://coopersquare.org/

East Harlem Preservation

Harlem

http://eastharlempreservation.org/

Family2Family Healthy Eating Community Gardening Project

Harlem

http://www.citizensnyc.org/grantee/family-2-family-healthy-eating

Fred Samuel Resident's Association

Harlem

http://www.citizensnyc.org/grantee/frederick-e-samuel-resident-association

Friends of Morningside Park

Harlem

http://morningsidepark.org/

Goddard Riverside Community Center

Riverside

http://www.goddard.org/

GOLES

Lower East Side

http://www.goles.org/

Greenwich Village Historic Preservation Society

West Village / Greenwich Village / East Village / NoHo

http://www.gvshp.org/_gvshp/index.htm

Hamilton Heights-West Harlem Community Preservation Organization

Hamilton Heights / West Harlem

http://westharlemcpo.org/

Hester Street Collaborative

Lower East Side

http://hesterstreet.org/

LES Ready

Lower East Side

http://lesready.org/

Marcus Garvey Park Alliance

Harlem

http://mgpalliance.org/

Mirabal Sisters Cultural & Community Center

Hamilton Heights

http://www.mirabalcenter.org/

National Mobilization Against Sweatshops

Lower East Side / Chinatown

http://www.nmass.org/what-is-nmass/

Sara Roosevelt Park Community Coaliton

Lower East Side

http://sdrpc.mkgarden.org/

Siempre Verde Garden

Lower East Side

http://svgarden.org/

South Harlem CERT

Harlem

https://www.facebook.com/South-Harlem-CERT-699446600098499/

Southern Bronx River Watershed Alliance

South Bronx

https://www.facebook.com/SBRWA/

Union Square Community Coalition

Union Square

http://www.unionsquarecommunitycoalition.org/

Village Independent Democrats

West Village

http://www.villageindependentdemocrats.org/

We Act for Environmental Justice

Harlem

http://www.weact.org/

University Settlement


http://www.universitysettlement.org/us/?


QUEENS


Organization

Neighborhood

Website

Chhaya CDC


http://chhayacdc.org/

Community of Maspeth & Elmhurst Together

Maspeth / Elmhurst / Woodside

http://www.cometcivic.com/

Edgemere Coalition Community Garden

Rockaway

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/58285/

Flushing Meadows Corona Park Conservancy

Flushing / Corona

http://www.fmcp-conservancy.org/

Flushing Workers Center

Flushing

http://www.sweatny.org/who-we-are/

Frank Ave Civic Association Garden

Rockaway

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/4158370012/

Free Synogogue of Flushing

Flushing

http://freesynagogueflushing.org/

Green Earth Urban Gardens Inc.

Woodhaven

http://www.greenearthurbangardens.org/

Grenada Daycare Garden

Rockaway

http://livinglotsnyc.org/lot/4159520013/

Jackson Heights Beautification Group

Jackson Heights

http://www.jhbg.org/

Jackson Heights Green Alliance

Jackson Heights

http://jhgreen.org/

Kissena Park Civic Association

Kissena Park

http://www.neighborhoodlink.com/Kissena_Park

Malba Gardens Civic Association

Whitestone

http://malbagardens.blogspot.com/

Queens Civic Congress


http://www.queensciviccongress.org/

Queens Coalition for Parks and Open Spaces


http://www.oasisnyc.net/stewardship/organizationdetails.aspx?id=1429

Queens Community House


https://qchnyc.wordpress.com/

Queens Neighborhood United


https://www.facebook.com/QueensNeighborhoodsUnited

Ridgewood Property Owners and Civic Association

Ridgewood

http://www.rpoca.org/

Rocky Hill Civic Association


http://www.rockyhillcivicassociation.com/

Rosedale Civic Association

Rosedale

http://www.rosedalecivic.org/

Save Flushing Meadows-Corona Park

Flushing Meadows Park

http://www.savefmcp.org/

Smiling Hogshead Ranch

Long Island City

https://www.facebook.com/SmilingHogsheadRanch

Woodside on the Move

Woodside

http://www.woodsideonthemove.org/

Queensboro Hill Flushing Civil Association

Queensboro Hill / Flushing

http://www.qhcivic.org/

Brooklyn Queens Land Trust


http://bqlt.org/

Catholic Migration


http://catholicmigration.org/

 

NYCommons Call for Designers

06 January 2016

This is a request for proposals for graphic and interaction design support for NYCommons.org, a website tool modeled on LivingLotsNYC.org to be built on its source code by the 596 Acres team. The site will display information about five distinct types of public real estate assets:

 

  1. Vacant public land and community gardens on land owned by City agencies and State Authorities;

  2. Post offices;

  3. Libraries;

  4. New York City Housing Authority campuses and other property; and

  5. Publicly-owned waterfront property.  

Background. NYCommons is a collaboration between Common Cause/NY, Community Development Project (CDP) at the Urban Justice Center and 596 Acres, Inc. We have already spent a year conducting research through meetings with over 100 organizations and community activists across NYC. Through our initial phase of outreach and research, we identified the five types of public assets we will focus on during our next phase of the project.    

Contact. Paula Z. Segal, Esq., Director, 596 Acres, paula@596acres.org, (718) 316-6092 x 2

Request for Proposals. We are looking for graphic and interaction design support to build on the logo (above) and create a look and feel for NYCommons.org:

Logo: development of the logo and a branding style guide so the logo can is used across various platforms in a consistent way, both on the web and in print.

Website: Front end design of templates for interactive map tool, modeled on LivingLotsNYC.org, including associated illustrations, icons, and other digital assets.

Interaction design: Design of user experience and flow of elements, developed in conjunction with development team and based on LivingLotsNYC.org. 

Compensation. The budget for design of the entire project is $7,600 (this is exclusive of our budget to build).

Timeline. Graphic design elements must be ready for integration into development by June 1, 2016. Interaction design must be completed by July 1, 2016.

Please provide 3-5 samples of relevant past work, a suggested timeline for completion (including design iterations) and an (optional) draft design utilizing the logo above in a web element (e.g. a banner).  We are particularly looking to evaluate your strength in building on an existing visual identity. Samples of past projects that included building around an existing logo or other elements would be great to see.

Applications are due Wednesday, January 20, 2016, at 5:59pm. Selections will be made by February 1, 2016.


We're Hiring a Program Manager for the NYC Community Land Access Program!

22 June 2015

Since 2011 596 Acres' Community Land Access Program has helped 34 groups transform vacant, City-owned pieces of land into community resources. Our online mapping tool makes information about public property available and easy to understand. We also engage neighbors by hanging up signs up on the fences and work with them to help realize community control over spaces.  


As the program manager, you'll play a key role in helping neighborhood groups navigate the process of accessing land and shaping how the program grows. This job combines community organizing, policy/organizing advocacy and program management. Our ideal candidate ispart visionary, part coach and part super-letter-writer.


We are looking for a flexible thinker who is ready to commit to a growing organization and thrilled to connect technology and organizing. Here's what you’ll do:


Program Management:

  • Coordinate, collaborate, and strategize in tandem with Executive Director

  • Work closely with 596 Acres advisory committee, both as a staff support and strategic partners

  • Manage volunteers and interns

  • Support development of organization’s programmatic work plan

  • Work with the Executive Director, governance board, staff and members to develop and evaluate organizing strategies

  • Generate new program ideas and work with staff and board to implement and carry out programming related to the organization’s priorities

  • Write the weekly News From the Acres

  • Manage social media accounts

  • Actively participate in developing and implementing fundraising strategy, including development of print and web materials  

  • Manage graphic designers and cartographers

  • Foster a team-oriented, supportive, accountable work environment at 596 Acres


Outreach:

  • Hang signs on fences of vacant lots City-wide

  • Lead workshops for various community based organizations and neighborhood groups

  • Table for 596 Acres at community events

  • Initiate and cultivate meaningful collaborations with community leaders, local politicians, and community-based organizations

  • Represent the organization with local and state government officials, in the media, and with private organizations

  • Use social media as outreach and organizing tool

  • Help complete a summer outreach project to visit 7 community boards in districts with the highest concentration of vacant, public land to share information about 596 Acres' work, current neighborhood land access organizing efforts, and district-specific maps


Land Access Advocacy Organizing:

  • Support the organizing efforts of local land access advocates around NYC by monitoring website activity and following up with active organizing groups regularly

  • Process and respond to new intake/email within 48 hours

  • Maintain our email-oriented database with extreme attention to detail

  • Stay current on city agency processes and priorities; translate into impacts on community use

  • Liaise with city agencies and intervene in direct community outreach when needed

  • Facilitate meetings for the public


Here's what we're looking for in an applicant:

  • Excellent listener, very comfortable talking to people in person and over the phone.

  • Demonstrated ability to manage own work and report consistently to colleagues and supervisors.

  • Experience in and commitment to bottom-up organizing, grassroots leadership, and collective decision-making

  • Extreme comfort with email and filing

  • Comfort with responding to email immediately within regular working hours

  • Comfort with flexible work  schedule to accommodate community event needs

  • Willingness to regularly travel throughout the five boroughs, with a home base at our Gowanus office

  • Some familiarity with City government processes (and willingness to learn more about them!)

  • Demonstrated ability to work in multi-racial, multi-lingual settings


This is a full time position with benefits. Our office is in Gowanus, Brooklyn; regular office hours are required. To apply, submit a cover letter and resume to organizers@596acres.org. Applications accepted on a rolling basis. We anticipate making a hiring decision by late January.

We're Hiring a Community Land Access Program Organizer!

20 May 2015

Since 2011 596 Acres' Community Land Access Program has helped 32 groups transform vacant, City-owned pieces of land into community resources. Our online mapping tools makes information about public property available and easy to understand. We also engage neighbors by hanging up signs up on the fences and work with them to help realize community control over spaces.  As the organizer, you'll play a key role in helping neighborhood groups navigate the process of accessing land. Here's what you’ll do:


Program Management

  • Coordinate, collaborate, and strategize in tandem with Executive Director

  • Work closely with 596 Acres advisory committee, both as a staff support and strategic partners

  • Manage volunteers

  • Support development of organization’s programmatic work plan

  • Work with the Executive Director, governance board, staff and members to develop and evaluate organizing strategies

  • Generate new program ideas and work with staff and board to implement and carry out programming related to the organization’s priorities

  • Write the weekly News From the Acres

  • Develop print and web materials as needed

  • Foster a team-oriented, supportive, accountable work environment at 596 Acres

 

Outreach

  • Hang signs on fences of vacant lots City-wide

  • Lead workshops for various community based organizations and neighborhood groups

  • Table for 596 Acres at community events

  • Support and initiate relationship-building and cultivate meaningful collaborations with community leaders, local politicians, and community-based organizations

  • Represent the organization with local and state government officials, in the media, and with private organizations

  • Use social media as outreach and organizing tool

  • Help complete a summer outreach project to visit 7 community boards in districts with the highest concentration of vacant, public land to share information about 596 Acres' work, current neighborhood land access organizing efforts, and district-specific maps

 

Land Access Advocacy Organizing

  • Support the organizing efforts of local land access advocates around NYC by monitoring website activity and following up with active organizing groups regularly

  • Process and respond to new intake within 48 hours

  • Maintain our email-oriented database with extreme attention to detail

  • Stay current on process of application for license and leases through relevant city agencies for community use

  • Liaise with city agencies and intervene in direct community outreach when needed

  • Help complete a summer outreach project to visit 7 community boards in districts with the highest concentration of vacant, public land to share information about 596 Acres' work, current neighborhood land access organizing efforts, and district-specific maps

  • Facilitate monthly general meetings

Here's what we're looking for in an applicant

  • Extreme comfort with email and filing

  • Experience in and commitment to bottom-up organizing, grassroots leadership, and collective decision-making

  • Comfort with responding to email immediately within regular working hours

  • Comfort with flexible organizing schedule to accommodate community event needs

  • Willingness to travel throughout the five boroughs

  • Familiarity with City government processes (and willingness to learn more about them!)

  • Demonstrated ability to work in multi-racial, multi-lingual settings

This is part time (21 hours per week) position with benefits. Pay is $24,000 per year (negotiable if you do not want to take advantage of the benefits package). Our office is in Gowanus, Brooklyn; regular office hours are required.


To apply, submit a cover letter and resume to organizers@596acres.org by Wednesday, May 27th at 12 pm.

We're Hiring an NYC Community Land Access Program Organizer!

27 April 2015

Since 2011 596 Acres' Community Land Access Program has helped 32 groups transform vacant, City-owned pieces of land into community resources. Our online mapping tools makes information about public property available and easy to understand. We also engage neighbors by hanging up signs up on the fences and work with them to help realize community control over spaces.  As the organizer, you'll play a key role in helping neighborhood groups navigate the process of accessing land. Here's what you’ll do:


Program Management

  • Coordinate, collaborate, and strategize in tandem with Executive Director

  • Work closely with 596 Acres advisory committee, both as a staff support and strategic partners

  • Manage volunteers

  • Support development of organization’s programmatic work plan

  • Work with the Executive Director, governance board, staff and members to develop and evaluate organizing strategies

  • Generate new program ideas and work with staff and board to implement and carry out programming related to the organization’s priorities

  • Write the weekly News From the Acres

  • Develop print and web materials as needed

  • Foster a team-oriented, supportive, accountable work environment at 596 Acres

 

Outreach

  • Hang signs on fences of vacant lots City-wide

  • Lead workshops for various community based organizations and neighborhood groups

  • Table for 596 Acres at community events

  • Support and initiate relationship-building and cultivate meaningful collaborations with community leaders, local politicians, and community-based organizations

  • Represent the organization with local and state government officials, in the media, and with private organizations

  • Use social media as outreach and organizing tool

  • Help complete a summer outreach project to visit 7 community boards in districts with the highest concentration of vacant, public land to share information about 596 Acres' work, current neighborhood land access organizing efforts, and district-specific maps

 

Land Access Advocacy Organizing

  • Support the organizing efforts of local land access advocates around NYC by monitoring website activity and following up with active organizing groups regularly

  • Process and respond to new intake within 48 hours

  • Maintain our email-oriented database with extreme attention to detail

  • Stay current on process of application for license and leases through relevant city agencies for community use

  • Liaise with city agencies and intervene in direct community outreach when needed

  • Help complete a summer outreach project to visit 7 community boards in districts with the highest concentration of vacant, public land to share information about 596 Acres' work, current neighborhood land access organizing efforts, and district-specific maps

  • Facilitate monthly general meetings

Here's what we're looking for in an applicant

  • Extreme comfort with email and filing

  • Experience in and commitment to bottom-up organizing, grassroots leadership, and collective decision-making

  • Comfort with responding to email immediately within regular working hours

  • Comfort with flexible organizing schedule to accommodate community event needs

  • Willingness to travel throughout the five boroughs

  • Familiarity with City government processes (and willingness to learn more about them!)

  • Demonstrated ability to work in multi-racial, multi-lingual settings

This is part time (21 hours per week) position with benefits. Pay is $24,000 per year (negotiable if you do not want to take advantage of the benefits package). Our office is in Gowanus, Brooklyn; regular office hours are required.


To apply, submit a cover letter and resume to organizers@596acres.org by Wednesday, May 27th at 12 pm.

Intern With Us: Spring 2015

25 February 2015

 

596 Acres is seeking an intern who can work with us 10 hours per week for 10 weeks, March 31 - June 4, 2015. 

Your tasks will include putting up signs on vacant lots, helping us transition our online tools and generally helping us improve the work that we do with focus on the New York City Community Land Access program. Here's an unsolicited review from a former intern (now our NYC Organizer). 

This Spring we will be updating our Spanish-language materials; we are looking for an intern who is biligual and proficient at written translation.

This is an unpaid internship, though we would love it if someone else was paying you! In the past, we have worked with the East New York Farms! Externship program (that intern's reflection is here). 

You will be working out of our office at Spaceworks (540 President Street) in Gowanus, Brooklyn on Tuesdays and Thursdays. You can make your own hours and there will be opportunities for field work or research on the weekends and in the evenings.

Comfort with navigation in parts of NYC you have never visited (even if you've been nearly everywhere) is key. Willingness to talk to strangers and learn how to do tasks on the computer are equally important. 

Please send a resume and a letter of interest. Include a picture of a place your neighborhood where participation by people who live or work close by could help make it better. 

Application due by 5:59p.m. on Friday, March 20, 2014, to organizers@596acres.org with the subject 'Spring 2015 Intern Application.'

Intern Needed: Urban Reviewer at the Queens Museum of Art

17 November 2014

596 Acres is looking for an intern to help program and staff the Urban Reviewer at the Queens Museum of Art. We are going to present all of the urban renewal plans that the City has ever adopted in an intervention directly on the Panorama of the City of New York, Jan 11 to February 8. 

An intern for this project will begin on December 1 and run through February 8 (10 weeks) for 10 hours per week. Hours are flexible. The intern will help prepare exhibition materials, coordinate the event series and staff events at the museum. You should be able to joyfully arrive at the Queens Museum on most weekend days during the run of the show (it's far away from most things in an interesting place - check it out).

For background on the Urban Reviewer look here: urbanreviewer.org.

Applications will be accepted until Wednesday, November 26 at 5pm. Send your resume and a short letter describing why you want to work on this project to paula@596acres.org

Intern With Us: Fall 2014!

06 August 2014

596 Acres is seeking an intern who can work with us 10 hours per week for 10 weeks, September 2 - November 6, 2014. 

Your tasks will include tabling at fun events like the GreenThumb Harvest Festival (September 13) and Fresh Kills Park Sneak Peak (September 28), putting up signs on vacant lots, helping with follow-up and transcription from the April 22-23 Vacant Acres Symposium, and helping us with our second-ever gala fundraiser (Mapping Matters on October 2 at Galapagos Art Space in DUMBO) and generally helping us improve the work that we do. Here's an unsolicited review from a former intern (now our NYC Organizer). 

This is an unpaid internship. You will be working out of our office at BuildItGreen!NYC in Gowanus, Brooklyn on Tuesdays and Thursdays. You can make your own hours and there will be opportunities for field work or research on the weekends and in the evenings.

Comfort with navigation in parts of NYC you have never visited (even if you've been nearly everywhere) is key. Willingness to talk to strangers and learn how to do tasks on the computer are equally important. 

Please send a resume and a letter of interest. Include a picture of a place your neighborhood where participation by people who live or work close by could help make it better. 

Application due by 11:59p.m. on Sunday, August 17, 2014, to organizers@596acres.org with the subject 'Fall 2014 Intern Application.'

GIS Mapping Help Needed

01 November 2013

As a watchdog for the disposition of public land, 596 Acres is being vigilant about the city Acquisition for Redevelopment program that is about to start adding formerly private property in neighborhoods affected by Superstorm Sandy to the city inventory (the largest such addition since the tax foreclosures of the 1970-80s and slum clearance of earlier decades). We are acting as the convener of a city-wide coalition of advocates working on turning this into a great opportunity for these neighborhoods and a means for the displaced to come home.

To support this work, we need a volunteer to make a GIS map that shows the areas impacted. Specifically, the coalition of community groups we are working with would like a map that shows three variables:

1. the most recent FEMA Preliminary Working Maps (recently released, no longer Advisory)

2. demographic information (low/moderate income) and 

3. the storm surge line. 

A different map for each borough might make sense. 

 

FEMA Preliminary Working Maps are available in three formats here (KML, Arc GIS and Web Map Service). I'm not sure what the date of release is but it is surely the most current. 

If this is you, email paula@596acres.org.

 

Short Term Project Interns Needed October-December 2013

21 October 2013

596 Acres, New York City's community land access advocacy organization, is looking for several (more) short-term interns this fall who can work 5 hours per week for approximately 6 weeks.  Your main task will be working with our Research Fellow to enter city data into spreadsheets for a project that will analyze the past and present impacts of city-led urban renewal plans

This is an unpaid internship.  You will participate in a short overview/orientation session at our downtown studio office and then work on data-entry in the office of Housing Preservation and Development near City Hall for approximately five 4-5 hour research sessions over the course of 6 weeks (preferably Thursday or Friday between the hours of 9am and 5pm). You wil need your own computer for this information liberation mission. 

Please send a short cover note and your resume to matt@596acres.org as soon as possible to apply. We'd love to hear about your favorite data project! 

We're Hiring an NYC Community Land Access Program Organizer!

21 June 2013

Applications are currently being reviewed. Thank you to all who applied.

Here's what they'll do:

Land Access Advocacy Organizing:

  • Support the organizing efforts of local land access advocates around NYC

  • Prepare signs for labeling vacant lots across NYC; manage volunteers

  • Hang signs on fences of vacant lots, city-wide; manage volunteers

  • Facilitate group meetings and monthly general meetings

  • Stay current on process of application for license and leases through relevant city agencies for community use

  • Liaise with city agencies and intervene in direct community outreach when needed

  • Maintain our email oriented database with extreme attention to detail

  • Process and respond to new intake within 24 hours

  • Develop print and web materials as needed

Outreach

  • Lead workshops for various community based organizations and neighborhood groups

  • Table for 596 Acres at community events

  • Support and initiate relationship-building and cultivate meaningful collaborations with community leaders, local politicians, and community-based organizations

  • Represent the organization with local and state government officials, in the media, and with private organizations

Program Management

  • Coordinate, collaborate, and strategize in tandem with Executive Director.

  • Edit and contribute to weekly News From the Acres

  • Work closely with 596 Acres advisory committee, both as a staff support and strategic partner.

  • Support development of organization’s programmatic work plan.

  • Work with the Executive Director, governance board, staff and members to develop and evaluate organizing strategies.

  • Generate new program ideas and work with staff and board to implement and carry out programming related to the organization’s priorities.

  • Foster a team-oriented, supportive, accountable work environment at 596 Acres.

 

Here's what we're looking for in an applicant:

  • Extreme comfort with email and filing.

  • Ability to lift 15 pound pieces of wood for sign making

  • Comfort with responding to email immediately within regular working hours

  • Comfort with flexible organizing schedule to accommodate community event needs

  • Willingness to commute throughout the five boroughs.

  • Familiarity with City Government Processes (and willingness to learn more about it!)

  • Experience in and commitment to bottom-up organizing, grassroots leadership, and collective decision-making.

  • Demonstrated ability to work in multi-racial, multi-lingual settings.

 

Compensation will be $24,000 per year. If the applicant wishes, we can provide benefits and a slightly reduced salary. The position requires a 25 hour per week commitment.

 

 

Teach. Imagine. Grow.

A land access advocacy curriculum and educational tool by 596 Acres.

596 Acres is a public education project aimed at making communities aware of the land resources around them. With the twin goals of food sovereign cites and community self-determination, 596 Acres is helping neighbors form connections to the vacant lots in their lives. New York City has a paucity of green space per person and the constant refrain is that there is not enough space here for all the awesome ideas that people have for how to green their neighborhoods and get to know their neighbors. It turns out the space is all around us—especially concentrated in neighborhoods that need it most. 596 Acres is working to connect communities to the information they need to gain control of their environments.

Teaching about Vacancies: Help others find the lot in their life!

Do you want to help young people imagine the future of their community? Want to grow something new on a vacant lot? This tool is for you! The activities presented in the following pages are matched to NY State Learning Standards designed for students ages 6 and up, but the basics of each activity can be used with students of all ages and in any learning environment. The curriculum presents three important ways to organize around land: brainstorming vacant lots, identifying strengths among friends/community, and making fliers. Feel free to use or adapt this curriculum anywhere for anyone—in the classroom, in the garden, as part of after school programs, community-based education, or anywhere else!

Tell us how YOU teach about vacancies.

We’d love to know how you teach about vacancies and what ideas you have for adapting our activities so we can share your amazing teaching and curriculum ideas with our 596 Acres community. Did you teach the activities in this curriculum as part of a lesson plan? Do you have sample student work from these activities that you would like to share with others? Do you already teach youth to get involved in their communities by transforming their environment? Share your stories and ideas with us: matt@596acres.org

Thanks for exploring our curriculum materials!

Be sure to visit us at 596acres.org where you can view our map of vacant land in NYC, watch a lot, start organizing, find helpful resources, or connect with neighbors and organizations already working to get land access.

Join us: Apply to be an Organizing Fellow in Your Borough!

25 February 2013

596 Acres is proud to announce three Organizing Fellow positions for Spring 2013, one each for the Bronx, Brooklyn and Manhattan.

To apply, please send a cover letter and your resume to organizers@596acres.org by 11:59pm on Sunday, March 31, 2013. Include a short story about a challenge you have encountered organizing within your community in the body of your letter. Please use the subject “Bronx Organizing Fellow” / “Brooklyn Organizing Fellow” / “Manhattan Organizing Fellow” for your email.

Positions will run April 15 - August 15, 2013; fellows will receive a stipend of $500 per month ($2000 for the entire fellowship) and will be asked to commit at least 40 hours per month.

Fellowship Duties and Responsibilities

  • Respond to inquiries about vacant lots in your borough and help communities structure their land access campaigns using 596 Acres resources, as well as OASIS, Acris and other databases.
  • Keep accurate notes about communities’ experiences with government entities.
  • Communicate with organizers in your borough by phone, email and in person.
  • Conduct popular education “Land Use Visioning Sessions” when requested in your borough.
  • Develop and maintain dialogue and relationships with community leaders, political entities, governmental agencies in order to create more garden spaces.
  • Co-develop and organize database of community leaders and stakeholders for multiple sites.
  • Assist in turning maps and broadsheets into signs that can be posted on vacant lots.
  • Manage volunteers for sign posting.
  • Act as a direct liaison, when necessary, with city agencies and community boards.
  • Check email at least every other day.
  • Meet twice a month with other fellows and facilitators to discuss
    • ongoing organizing efforts
    • strategies for approaching communities &
    • to problem solve city agency interactions.

Recommended Qualifications
  • General knowledge of community gardens, their history and city and state governmental structures that directly affect them.
  • Understanding politics of land access, politics around vacancy, land usage, and development in the borough where you will be working.
  • Ability to operate well in a collective-type organizational and decision-making structure.
  • Ability to speak Spanish, and present comfortably in both Spanish and English.
  • General knowledge of borough geography and neighborhoods/community boards.
  • Knowledge of OASIS, ACRIS and other city databases, maps and research tools
  • Understanding of gardening basics, and familiarity with resources available to gardeners
  • Experience in grassroots community organizing and/or founding, running, or working in a community garden are all a plus!
  • Available most weekends during fellowship.

Seeking a Journalism Student to Do Some Structured Reporting About 596 Acres Sites

22 October 2012

596 Acres engages with all sorts of communities all over the city. We are looking for help telling the story of our advocacy support from the communitiies' perspectives. We would like to partner with a jounalism student who can make a 6-12 month commitment to doing a set of structured interviews with the folks that we work with. We will publish your work on our website (occasionally with a by line if you like) and use it in our press releases and reporting materials.

You will be contacting groups that engage with the 596 Acres team 1 month, 3 months, 6 months and one year after their engagement begins. We'll work together to develop a protocol. 

To apply, send a sample of your work, a cover letter, and a short story about small scale change to paula@596acres.org by 11:59pm on Saturday, November 4, 2012. 

OPPORTUNITY: BRONX-BASED DESIGNERS

09 October 2012

 

596 Acres is making a new poster for the Bronx this Fall!!! 

We're looking for a designer to design the map (which will be printed in English & Spanish with our organizing guide on the back).

We will pay an honorarium of $100. Designs will be completed by December 1, so we are looking for folks who have time to devote in November.

Please submit three samples of relevant work and a short statement about your connection to the Bronx to by 11:59p.m. on FRIDAY, October 26, 2012 to stephan@596acres.org. We'll get back to you within the week.