On July 21st, CSLN members gathered for the summer bi-monthly meeting at Alliance for the Great Lakes. The space was beautiful and overlooked Millennium Park - many thanks to our gracious hosts! 36 people attended the meeting, 13 of whom were new to the CSLN. The meeting began with a light Mingle Bingo game to help members learn new things about one another.
The group briefly split in two so that new members could get better acquainted with the CSLN and returning members could discuss various options for membership structure. Returning members reviewed the CSLN values around membership, results of the recent membership survey, and proposed membership structures created by the CSLN Shared Leadership team. The intent of a membership structure is to allow for more ways for people and organizations to engage with the CSLN. The group came to the consensus that a semi-formal membership structure with clearly delineated membership types and corresponding expectations for benefits and investments would best achieve that goal. After incorporating the group feedback, the CSLN Shared Leadership team will share the next steps of formalizing membership with the network.
The second half of the meeting focused on an ongoing conversation on how CSLN can help inform city policy, programs and partnerships. This specific discussion was about an opportunity to work with the city around education and awareness strategies to reduce recycling contamination throughout Chicago. If this project moves forward, it will be the first tangible step in fostering the 'in-between space' between policy makers and grassroots community organizations that the CSLN has been seeking. The proposal was finalized and submitted to the city after input from the meeting was incorporated.
The night ended with some members celebrating summer in a fun night out at the Millennium Park - listening to Heritage Blues Orchestra and Toshi Reagon, while talking all things sustainability!