The Foundations for Leaders Organizing for Water and Sustainability (FLOWS) Program mission is to create spaces to elevate, celebrate, and bring attention to the leadership of underrepresented and underinvested voices in the sustainability world. FLOWS works closely with BIPOC, Immigrant, Low-income, LBGTQ+ and Disabled communities and functions as a platform for environmental and social justice leadership education, cultural celebration, and skill-based capacity building. FLOWS aims to uplift the community voices and provide opportunities for those we serve to bridge and connect people and resources while offering perspectives in equity and climate justice.
Green Jobs Training
FLOWS leaders are CU Boulder staff / students and community members working together. FLOWS aims to raise awareness in community members about their environmental conservation practices, and concepts like cultural values, decolonization, equity, and economic justice. The FLOWS team training involves intercultural discussions about divers sustainable traditions and climate justice. FLOWS leaders discuss a wide range of sustainable lifestyle behaviors, emphasizing the nexus between water, energy use, and social justice. FLOWS leaders receive trainings and stipends for their work.
Pre-Covid Home Visits
Prior to the Covid-19 Pandemic, FLOWS provided free water and energy upgrades to Boulder Housing Partners (BHP) residents. During the visits, FLOWS technicians provided sustainability information and advised residents in making sustainable, equitable shifts in their daily consumption habits. Energy and water saving devices such as LED light bulbs, faucet aerators, and low-flow shower heads were provided and installed free of charge. FLOWS visits were designed to increase community member’s leadership capacity, and lower energy and water bills (when applicable) and environmental impacts at the same time, a solution to both social justice and environmental issues. FLOWS hopes to be able to go back to this peer-to-peer model as soon as it is safe for all.
Current Community Engagement
During the Covid-19 Pandemic, FLOWS created a Virtual Community Learning Series to highlight leaders from our communities who are experts in the sustainability dialogues and initiatives. FLOWS is intentional about disrupting existing power dynamics and focusing in the resilience, adaptability and capacity to thrive of these communities. FLOWS values language access and has provided this series as a Spanish first space with professional simultaneous interpretation. To ensure offered programs and services are inclusive and accessible, FLOWS is prioritizing focus groups with community members.
FLOWS partners with the City of Boulder’s Climate Initiatives Department, Boulder Housing Partners —the Housing Authority in the City of Boulder, and Cool Boulder.
Learn more about the leaders and work.