The city of Houston is offering financial incentives and institutional support to volunteer-driven block projects that revitalize neighborhoods. One of the first grants was awarded to EB Brooks of Better Houston to fund the collaborative Better Block project taking place at the 2100 block of Washington Avenue on May 12.
The city is calling on neighborhood volunteers to come forward in an effort to make their communities look better, according to KTRK Houston:
It’s a little friendly competition among neighborhoods that want to make their residential area a little nicer, and they’ll get help from the city of Houston and a major corporate sponsor if they apply.
Local groups can apply to receive a $500 Home Depot gift card to start projects that will improve their block.
“We think that there a lot of Houston neighborhoods that would be interested; only 20 Love Your Block gifts will be available,” Parker said.
E.B. Brooks with A Better Houston immediately filled out an application for her organization. Their goal is to plant greenery and improve the walkability of the 2000 block of Washington.
“It’s just kind of a catalyst to get the volunteers moving with the kind of the materials that they need to do neighborhood revitalization projects, and so we’re really excited to buy paint and supplies and nails and rent tools from them,” Brooks said.
The city says the Home Depot-sponsored grant program isn’t meant to cover all costs of a neighborhood project. Rather, it’s designed to bring people together, get them motivated and provide a good starting point for neighbors like Jenkins.
Interested communities need to apply through the city of Houston.
Apply for a Love Your Block grant here.