Monday, June 25, 2012

Cardborgami visits the Green Tent July 1

Bring your kids and help decorate

a cool, origami shelter made of recyclable cardboard. See how it folds up and expands. Learn about Cardborgami's program for helping the homeless using these innovative temporary shelters. It's all happening this Sunday at the Green Tent.

Origami, the ancient Japanese art of paper folding, inspired the structure and form of the shelter. It's primary material - standard cardboard - provides natural insulation and structural qualities. The folds provide structural stability.

The shelters are waterproof and flame-retardant, and can fold open and closed in less than a minute with no assembly required. When not in use, the shelter folds into a size a single person can easily carry. Come try one out and see how it's done!

Intended to provide a temporary, portable and recyclable shelter to the homeless and to disaster victims while helping to get them placed into permanent housing, a Cardborgami structure would make a great playhouse as well!

Cardborgami's goal involves more than simply handing out the Cardborigami units to those in need. The plan is to partner with other homeless aid organizations that have facilities where people could safely use the shelters overnight and also learn how to construct their own Cardborigami unit. Cardborgami hopes to integrate a recycling program into their distribution system, encouraging the homeless to collect cardboard and turn it in at the same centers where they can construct and pick up their own portable unit.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Master Gardeners this Sunday, June 24!

Master Gardeners bring seeds, seedlings & help

The UCCE LA County Master Gardeners are back at the Mar Vista Community Council's Green Tent on June 24 with seasonally appropriate FREE herb and veggie plants, and seeds to share.
 Wondering what to plant now? Need help figuring out why your favorite plant is looking peekish--and what to do about it? Have a question about organic gardening? 

Get the latest research-based information about urban gardening, horticulture and the environment. Learn what's appropriate for our Mar Vista ecosystem--and the 10 invasive plants to avoid. Or just stop by to pick up a free seedling and packet of seeds...and to chat a bit with some garden experts.

Our wonderful Master Gardener Volunteers take an intensive training program in all aspects of gardening and are a font of information. They give their time teaching others, especially in low-income areas. Master Gardeners offer workshops at community gardens, housing development gardens, homeless shelter gardens, answer questions on our Help Line, and much more.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Little Free Library at the Green Tent

Take a book, leave a book

Courtesy of Transition Mar Vista/Venice, we'll have a Little Free Library at the Green Tent for the next month.

Little Free Library's mission is

  • To promote literacy and the love of reading by building free book exchanges worldwide. 

  • To build a sense of community as we share skills, creativity, and wisdom across generations

The very first Little Library sits in the front yard of a home above the St. Croix River in Hudson, Wisconsin. It's full of books about gardening and community life. Not a drop of water has trickled inside...but books have come and gone since its first week by the river.  
..   When its sojourn at the Green Tent is over, Transitions will permanently install our Little Free Library somewhere in our community. Transitions is building additional Little Free Library boxes from scrape materials on June 30. Contact Transitions if you're interested in helping to build the boxes or in having one installed.

The Exploratory visits us on Sunday, June 17

The Exploratory 

is bringing its Wind Tunnel activity to the Green Tent. 

The Exploratory encourages families to look at recycled materials in new ways - as a bird or a helicopter that can fly up and out of the wind tunnel, or a hovercraft or jelly fish that floats inside the wind tunnel. 

Come and bring new life to toilet paper rolls, plates and cups. This is a perfect Father's Day activity for dads and kids to share.

is dedicated to bringing the possibilities of Tinkering and Making to families and schools. A local non-profit, it believes that creative learning is innately born in every human being and that a sustainable future depends upon our children being confidently  armed  with the tools to harness imagination to create innovative solutions.  

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Transition Mar Vista/Venice Visits Us On Sunday June 10th!

Transition Mar Vista/Venice

 is a local hub of the Transition Movement, which seeks to address the challenges of climate change, peak oil and economic contraction by building resilient communities and  increasing local food, water, energy and human security.

 Transition Mar Vista/Venice is a grassroots group on the west side of Los Angeles, with the mission of transitioning to more resource aware and locally self-sufficient lifestyles to meet the challenges ahead. 

If you have questions about how communities are rising to the difficult challenges that face us today-

 stop by Sunday and join in the conversation!