With the year coming to a close, we are looking back on an eventful 2016 full of victories as well as looking forward to new challenges. ReThink Energy Florida’s mission to engage, educate and empower citizens to take action and achieve energy independence in a healthier, more sustainable environment has made significant progress with both continuation of ongoing projects as well as expansion that includes new programs and partnerships. Here are some of our highlights:
Children's and Adult Education
- An expanded Regional Energy Whiz Expo - we doubled the number of children served this year!
- The most successful Energy Camp - We gave out more scholarships than ever before!
- The Tallahassee Science Festival - we had the most visitors yet!
- Outstanding adult education - we conducted workshops, movie nights, and lectures across the state! Most recently, we added our monthly lunch and learn to our list of activities
Of course, we can't forget the advocacy program:
- Winning battles against fracking - We successfully defeated the pro-fracking legislation in the 2016 Florida legislative session
- Supporting solar in 2016 - with two huge wins in Florida, we supported Amendment 4, and defeated Amendment 1! Leon County, where we have our biggest base, was the second highest 'No' vote thanks in large part to all of our efforts.
- Sabal Trail - with the kick-off of our lunch-and-learn series, we packed the room with Tallahasseeans wanting to learn about the Sabal Trail pipeline
- ReThink Energy Action Fund - while we've stayed within our limits on advocacy as a 501c3, the board approved the creation of a sister 501c4 organization. Stay tuned for more information coming in the New Year about the Action Fund.
2017 Brings New Challenges:
In 2017, we'll kick off our activities with the Lunch and Learn series in Tallahassee - we will host Lunch and Learns on the 3rd Wednesdays of the Month. Our first one in Tallahassee will be "The Good News for the Environment in Florida" at noon at the BL Perry Library (2817 S. Adams Street, Tallahassee) - there actually is a lot of good news that came in November for Florida's environment! We'll kick off 2017 with some positivity! Cant make lunch-time? Have no fear - the evening 'Dine and Discover' is coming too! Not in Tallahassee? Reach out to us about bringing it to your area!
The Regional Energy Whiz Olympics are right around the corner! On Saturday, Feb. 4 2017, children compete racing solar cars in the Solar Sprint, and creating Clean Energy Cuisine in the Solar Cook-Off! We’d like to help sponsor the winner of our local event to travel to the statewide event. Please let us know if you can help with this important educational event!
Reclaiming Florida’s Future! Last year, this advocacy event was instrumental in defeating the bogus, industry-friendly fracking bills as well as supporting the Pro-Solar bills that became Amendment 4 on this year’s primary election ballot. Next year, on March 22, we’ll be fighting fracking again, with some bills to ban fracking entirely having been filed! We’ll also be supporting whatever bills can move us out of the dirty fossil-fuel economy and into the clean energy –and clean water - future! Your sponsorship could help us win this fight!
Energy Ball helps fund our Energy Camp for rising third through sixth graders. In 2017, Energy Ball will be on June 10 at the Elk's Lodge. We always have wonderful food, great dance music, and the best silent auction in town. Your sponsorship helps provide scholarships for energy camp!
The Energy Run 5k was held for the first time in the fall of 2016, and was a lot of fun! The Energy Run is a great way to get some good exercise, and raise awareness for our organization. The funds raised help us in our educational efforts.
And of course, we will once again be participating in the Tallahassee Science Festival and leading the Green Shopping Holiday Extravaganza.
Finally, in 2017 we will be launching chapters in four new counties via a Patagonia Grant. We’re excited to be officially expanding into new locales, and your support for these efforts, or for general operating expenses, is appreciated.
As you finalize your year-end donations and look towards giving in the New Year, we invite you to consider sponsoring one of these upcoming programs and events, or donating or volunteering with us as ReThink Energy Florida grows to new levels this year!
If you are able to donate at this year-end even at the $15 or higher level, we would love to get you an Energy Run Tshirt!
Thank you so much for your consideration and for your past support! We hope you have a Happy New Year!
President, ReThink Energy Florida
PS - As you finish your holiday shopping, if you use Amazon, please remember to use smile.amazon.com/ch/27-3190205! When you use this link, Amazon donates to Rethink Energy Florida, Inc. for every purchase you make!