Seattle Works

A blog that documents all things Seattle Works…and much much more!

Painting the town February 28, 2011

Filed under: Our Team — seattleworks @ 11:00 pm
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Last Friday we had ourselves some team fun!  We try to all get together in the same place for some fun once a month, but the last few months we’ve run into some scheduling trouble. 

Randi was in charge of this month’s fun and we headed to Paint the Town in U Village to put our creativity and artistic skills to the test.

Tegan was very focused on her sweet mug:

Tara making a lovely votive holder that matches her upstairs bathroom. 

Kathleen, Jan and Randi. Between them they painted two butter dishes and a precious dog dish for Jan’s new puppy.

The team and their pre-fired pieces.

We definitely made up for lost time!


Conversation, Cocktails and Community Cinema February 22, 2011

Filed under: Influence — seattleworks @ 9:10 pm

Last Tuesday, we tried something new by bringing people together at Liberty Bar to watch the inspiring movie, Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathai.  Wangari Maathai won the Nobel Peace prize in 2004 for eliciting massive social and political change in Kenya.  While this was no small undertaking, her vision started with the simple act of teaching women in her community to plant trees in order to counteract the effects of colonial deforestation. 

The documentary, supplied to us by the Emmy-award winning PBS series Independent Lens, took us through the stages of her peaceful fight, from its humble beginnings as the Green Belt Movement to its triumphant end with a democratically elected president of Kenya. 

To say this movie was inspiring might be an understatement. It emphasized the power of grassroots movements to change the world, and allowed us all to recognize how we’re changing the world every day in our own ways. 

After the movie, we had a thoughtful discussion about the issues brought up in the film.  We talked about the importance of changing our economic perspective when it comes to environmental loss as well as the value of education as an impetus for change.  One participant tied the movie to the book Confessions of an Economic Hitman, which led us to another great idea …

Would you be interested in reading this book (or some other!) and getting together with a group of people to discuss it?  We want to inspire dialogue in our community, but are dedicated to doing that in a way that meets your needs and desires.  Our Community Cinema event proved that having a movie to react to gets people talking.  Have ideas to get the gabfest going? Tell us:


Photo by Wanjira Mathai


The finished product February 18, 2011

Filed under: HandsOn Schools,Volunteer — seattleworks @ 1:08 am
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We are happy to report that the mural at Concord International School is finished and installed.  ROUND OF APPLAUSE!

This mural began a year ago and has had tons of love poured into it by volunteers, parents, students, teachers, the list goes on and on. 

You can read about the previous Concord International School projects here:

and here:


Wow, that mural is a thing of beauty.  Special thanks to Stephanie Heffner, former Seattle Works AmeriCorps*VISTA that put a ton of hard work into the HandsOn Schools projects and especially into those projects at Concord.  Look at that work pay off!


Another round of Team Works takes off February 15, 2011

Filed under: Team Works,Volunteer — seattleworks @ 9:00 am

The first weekend this month marked another round of Team Works kicking off with their first Saturday full of volunteer projects. 

Team Nerdy & Dirty headed out to the Science Materials Center to work on cutting fabric, measuring dirt, building shelves and a bunch of other tasks.  This center is dedicated to making it easier for teachers to teach by working to refurbish the science kit of the month. Volunteer support is critical to timely delivery of kits to classrooms that are ready to use.

Nerdy & Dirty’s day wrapped up with a little ping pong tournament down in Georgetown at Jules Mae. 


Sounds like a nice little Saturday they had planned there.


Looking for our secret admirer

Filed under: Grab bag — seattleworks @ 12:59 am
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Somebody sent us a valentine!  It’s so great, we couldn’t keep it to ourselves.

Featured in The Stranger’s Reader Valentines it says:

I ❤ U Seattle Works

It’s been over 3 years and we’re still together, longer than me and any girlfriend ever. We’ve done some amazing stuff together and I heart you for it

Seriously, we aren’t making this up!

Lucky for us, our AmeriCorps gal Kathleen was thoroughly reading through the listings looking for the one that was meant for her, and stumbled upon the message for us.

We ❤ you too, secret admirer.  Your message is pinned on our bulletin board, and will forever be pinned to our hearts.


All you can eat pancakes! February 12, 2011

Filed under: Hot Projects,Volunteer — seattleworks @ 11:00 am

Have you heard of Hiawatha Community Center?  It’s over in West Seattle and they create community through people, parks and programs.

Back in October a group of volunteers helped them out with running carnival games, giving out prizes, decorating, setup and break down of games.  The volunteer support allowed them to accommodate over 500 people for an evening full of fun with their community!


Last weekend another group of volunteers went out to the Hiawatha Community Center and supported their all you can eat pancake breakfast fundraiser.  The funds raised from the event went toward families so they can participate in sports.  Without this fundraiser, several of those families might have missed out on the chance to participate in local sports. Volunteers helped with all aspects of the event from serving, stocking, setup, breakdown, upkeep, prepping and greeting.


From what I hear, the pancakes were delish.

PS – thanks Sam for sharing your photos with us!


Seattle Speaks: Seattle Public Schools February 11, 2011

Filed under: Influence — seattleworks @ 7:10 pm

Last night we were lucky enough to be a part of a live television program on the state of Seattle Public Schools.  The show was hosted by C.R. Douglas of Seattle Channel and featured:

  • Olga Addae, P resident of Seattle Education Association
  • Lauren McGuire, Interim President of Seattle Council PTSA
  • Kay Smith-Blum, Member of the Seattle School Board
  • Cathy Thompson, Executive Director of Instructional Services, Seattle School District

Many topics were covered and there was no shortage of heated dialogue from parents, teachers and concerned community members.  Tough questions were thrown to the panel and they did not shy away. The focus was mostly on the district’s strategic plan and towards the end there was conversation about the new teachers contract that was recently approved.

We started the night out with this audience poll:

They re-polled the live audience and the online audience in the middle of the show, and then again at the end.  Folks were definitely changing their minds after hearing more about the strategic plan and the 2010 report card, but not all in one direction.  In other words, it’s not like the discussion swayed everyone’s mind to be in favor or to be against the strategic plan. 

Thank you to CityClub, Seattle Channel and Town Hall for putting on this excellent event.  I highly recommend watching the program and learning more about what is happening with our public schools.  Viewing times and video can be found here: