Almost 100 towns in Connecticut have registered with Sustainable CT, and Cheshire may be next. The group Coalition for Sustainable Cheshire was founded recently by residents who believe in the mission of Sustainable CT and would like to see Cheshire added to the list of cooperating towns.
Sustainable CT was developed through cooperation between municipal leaders, businesses, nonprofits, academics and residents as a way to “promote the health and well-being of current and future residents," according to the group's website, and aims to “provide municipalities with a menu of coordinated, voluntary actions” and to provide needed resources and tools to promote sustainability.
This strikes us as a worthy pursuit well suited to a community like Cheshire.
“I knew I wanted to get involved with Sustainable CT when I went to a presentation,” said A. Fiona Pearson, a member of the Coalition for Sustainable Cheshire. “I started to bring up the idea to friends of mine or people I thought would want to get involved, and it grew from there.”
“As the Executive Director of Bike Cheshire, I was planning to participate in Sustainable CT anyway," said Jim Jinks, who is serving his first term on the Town Council. “It's a great way for nonprofits to access grant funds without some of the typical hurdles and uncertainty associated with other grant programs.”
According to The Day of New London, organizations in seven Connecticut municipalities recently received $57,550 from Sustainable CT to kick-start projects in their communities, including: “expanding a youth development program in New Haven; tree plantings across Willimantic; a wayfinding system in Thompson; outdoor classrooms for Bristol schools; new trees in a West Hartford park; community gardens in New London; and a new composting program for Greenwich schools.”
While Cheshire has yet to decide whether to officially join the Sustainable CT program, the Coalition for Sustainable Cheshire is actively looking for support from local businesses and individuals. This could be an effective move and should serve to build a sense of community in a forward-looking town like Cheshire.