Authors: Markese Bryant, College Ambassador Program Associate On November 13, 2010, Green For All hosted an amazing community conference and concert in conjunction with Dillard University called Green UP NOLA, featuring local organizations in New Orleans, Louisiana. The sun was shining through the windows of the LEED Gold certified Professional School Building, where a few hundred New Orleans citizens came inspired to revive, sustain and celebrate the home of some of the best food and music in the world, New Orleans. A large group of Dillard students, including our college ambassadors Nadine Wallace and Charne Thomas, came out to serve, helping to guide the attendees around their beautiful campus. It was exciting to watch the students and people from the community wear their "Green Up NOLA" shirts with pride. This day was truly a testament to the resilience of the City of New Orleans.
This exciting event started around noon with some dynamic workshops, covering a wide range of topics including ecological transformation in the Gulf, energy and weatherization, and the role of hip hop culture in the green jobs movement. Many well respected leaders from New Orleans were honored—Warrenetta Banks of The Lower 9th Ward Center for Sustainable Engagement and Development, who was awarded the Green Up Local Hero Award.
As the sun went down, the concert lights came on illuminating some incredible artists like Sha'Condria "iCon" Sibley, Doo-Dat, Lil Dee, Truth Universal, Tem Blessed, Seasunz, Charmaine Neville Band, Hot 8 Brass Band, and one of the greatest hip hop duos ever, Dead Prez. M-1 and Stic Man performed a wide range of records including classics like "Hip Hop" and "Be Healthy." The crowd was truly moved and inspired by the awesome performances. Green Up NOLA was a bold step in the right direction to build a movement for an inclusive green economy strong enough to lift people out of poverty. We must unlock the untapped potential of the HBCU community and the Hip Hop community to ensure that low income communities do not remain at the margins of the movement, but is held at the center of everything we do.