RCE Greater Portland-2017

1. Project Title: 
NWEI EcoChallenge 2017
2. Thematic area/s addressed by the project
3. Project partner contact information : 
Northwest Earth Institute
Organizing Host
Main Contact: 
David Macek
David Macek
NWEI Exec Director and GPSEN Treasurer
4. Project type
5. Project description
Provide a short description of the project including strategies, regional challenges, aims and specific project activities.: 

This annual community event, created by the Northwest Earth Institute (NWEI), allows teams of participants from neighborhoods, schools, businesses, and beyond, to take on a challenge(s) to change a behavior for two weeks. The EcoChallenge is free, in-line, and open to anyone. Whether at work or on campus, with friends or family, NWEI encourages developing camaraderie and friendly peer pressure to make change a little easier, and a lot more fun. A great team-building and personal experience, the EcoChallenge makes a real difference in our own lives and the community. 

The regional challenges that this project addresses focuses on environmental issues and actions that we can take in our homes, workplaces and communities. NWEI allows us to choose an EcoChallenge category that appeals to us, including: Food; Health; Water; Transportation; Energy; Community; Waste; Nature; Simplicity; or Create Your Own. Using social psychological theories, they have found that participating in the EcoChallenge is a great way to inspire behavior change. 

The teams are on-line, so people can join from across the region and around the world. This fun and meaningful opportunity helps people learn something new. Plus, teams and individuals can compete with each other and win prizes! Many of our RCE partners create teams and use this as an annual event to build relationships and make a difference. 

More details are available at https://ecochallenge.org/.

6. Project status
The 2017 EcoChallenge took place from October 11-25, with 637 teams and 12171 participants (up from 8,350 participants last year).

We have had an RCE Greater Portland EcoChallenge team for five years, even before we were officially recognized as an RCE. This year, our official RCE Greater Portland, aka GPSEN, team had 8 members (down from 20), in addition to partner teams across our region. Of the 637 teams, 24 formal and nonformal partners participated, with a range of team members equaling 1,876 participants.

Catlin Gabel School (15)
Center for Diversity and the Environment (11)
City of Gresham (24)
City of Hillsboro (56)
City of Lake Oswego (21)
City of Portland (177)
City of Vancouver 3)
City of West Linn (34)
Clackamas County (25)
Clark County (2)
Earth Advantage (10)
Intertwine Alliance (5)
Marylhurst University (54)
Metro (91)
Mt Hood Community College (274)
Multnomah County (4 teams -215 participants)
Northwest Earth Institute Community Team (306)
Oregon Zoo (28)
Oregon Environmental Council (3)
Port of Portland (112)
Portland Community College (6 teams- 263 participants)
Portland State University (5 teams- 47)
US Fish and Wildlife (18)
Washington County (82)

It was a great success and we look forward to doing the EcoChallenge again next year.
8. Tagging