Meet the Winter 2023 Small Grants Program Grantees!
The Hope SF Initiative is honored to spotlight recipients of the Winter 2023 HOPE SF Small Grants Program, funding resident-centered projects across Alice Griffith, Hunters View, Potrero Hill, and Sunnydale. The Small Grants Program recognizes that Hope SF residents have the solutions to uplift HOPE SF voices through community-generated ideas.
Please be sure to scroll through each series of photos to see this amazing work in action!
Moral Conduct, Clean and Safe Community
“We have a team of sweepers and moppers, a team of people who are cleaning all the floors and working as a unit, as a team. We get the job done.” – Willie Brown
Led by Alice Griffith resident Willie Brown, Moral Conduct is a newly formed organization comprised of Alice Griffith residents building community through improvement projects, cultural events, and personal development workshops. The Moral Conduct volunteers clean Alice Griffith buildings once a week as a team. There are about four captains, one for each floor with two roving captains trained in the cleaning process, who then train youth volunteers in zero waste principles. Willie Brown founded Moral Conduct as a way for residents to recognize some responsibility for improving the quality of life in the community, and hosting a clean-up day once a week was an opportunity to bring residents together for a shared accomplishment of improving the environment of the building in which they live. On a typical clean-up day, volunteers gather to check their cleaning supplies and create a plan for the building they are focused on that day. Floor captains head to each floor, with volunteers side by side ready with brooms, mops, and sponges. They sweep the floors, scrub the walls, and haul out all trash around their cleaning areas. They work hard as a team to bring a shine to the living areas of the Alice Griffith buildings.
“We practice goal setting, self esteem and self love that young women can embrace. Connecting the young ladies to a new perspective on life that has a positive impact on their attitudes and behaviors within families, work place and communities.” – Traci Watson
The S.H.E. Project focused on Safety, Health, and Empowerment training for 16 and 17-year-old women from all four HOPE SF sites. Throughout this course, seven young women focused on safety by learning to create boundaries, attain safe relationships, complete domestic violence training, and train in STD prevention. When they focused on health, participants expressed that they wanted to lose weight but didn’t have funds for a gym membership. The young women learned ways to stay in shape without a gym by practicing healthy eating, healthy cooking, and practicing kickboxing with movement and mobility as medicine. To focus on empowerment, this powerful group practiced being mindful, being thoughtful of others, completed CPR training, and learned to administer AEDs. At a S.H.E. Project meeting, girls came in and picked a mood, signified by butterflies with different colors to show where they were at mentally, did an ice breaker, reflected on the last workshop, highlighted what they learned and gave suggestions on what should be changed, letting the young women create the atmosphere. After eating healthy snacks, a dance facilitator named Brenda Purdue came in to teach a movement lesson called “Urban Moves”. She created a space to engage and partner up, so everyone participated. They practiced salsa and techno-Cuban and felt tired and worked out by experiencing “movement as medicine”.
Power Up Book Club
“My connection in Sunnydale runs deep and the community has been a priority of mine. The Power Up Book Club is a program I created out of my own struggle and the desire to not have young children face the same stumbling blocks I did when it came to reading.” -Dorothy Curry
Power Up Book Club served Sunnydale youth by creating a space to come together and practice reading in an encouraging environment. Five adults and twelve youth ages 14 and below came together to read the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, which was chosen by the children. At a Book Club meeting, participants prayed in, formed a circle, announced their names, and took turns reading the book around the circle. They went around twice so everyone had a chance to read, including the adults, then discussed the book. After the discussion, everyone ate dinner together and played games. Dorothy Curry, a former HOPE SF resident of Potrero Hill, formed this group to offer support in learning to read and practicing reading out loud for HOPE SF youth. To prepare for the Power Up Book Club, Dorothy did a lot of outreach letting people know about the club and spreading the word at community events.
“Most youth are from Sunnydale and Hunters Point. Everyone was all hands on deck, community and families reached out to help and become a part of the Fealofani Festival. We have a wonderful team.” -Vonnie Kiliona
Over 250 participants at the Fealofani Festival watched hours of powerful dance performed by Pacific Islander youth from HOPE SF in celebration of music, dance, and language. Dancers demonstrated their leadership skills, developed the Festival program, and expressed their culture and art through Samoan dance and singing. Feolafani, meaning harmonious, togetherness, unity, brought HOPE SF youth leaders together from Potrero Hill, Alice Griffith, Sunnydale, and Hunters View to create dance performances through monthly workshops in which they built leadership skills, planned the festival event, and created dance performances to showcase Pacific Islander dance and culture. On the day of the event, HOPE SF youth greeted festivalgoers and encouraged everyone to enjoy the dance performances. 38 dancers performed in varying groups to showcase their self-designed dances that they had been creating for the last few months in preparation for the festival. Taking place in May, the Feolafani Festival was a great way to honor Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, while uplifting HOPE SF youth to showcase their leadership and performance skills.
Spilling the Tea Quilting Project
“We are Spilling the Tea Senior Group. The purpose of the quilting project is to get our community together to celebrate different heritages, histories and build a sense of community coming together.” -Hunters View Senior Group
A group of HOPE SF grandmothers, mothers, sisters, and daughters living at Hunters View gather weekly to share stories, practice art, and take trips together. This Spring, the Senior Group created a quilting project to keep their heritage and history alive for the youth of the future by creating quilts that showcase the history of their lives at Hunters View. The seniors working on the quilt describe the process as a way to bring the seniors and community together to create a sense of value, respect, and belonging. They hope to bring the community together by sharing their stories through quilting and build relationships with the community by creating a quilt that symbolizes their experience living in HOPE SF. At their weekly meetings, the seniors gather to share a meal and trade stories of their day, then jump into that day’s portion of quilting. Some seniors have more quilting experience than others, so some meeting time is set aside for learning and sharing quilting knowledge. The seniors then work together to bring their community quilt to life in a safe and healthy environment where they can uplift their minds and bodies while socializing.