I joined the Hanford Challenge team as their new Communications and Development Director only a few months ago. I’ve had a great time attending our events from public meetings to happy hours, it’s been awesome getting to meet new people and learn more about the issues facing the Hanford nuclear waste site.
On August 31st I attended my first “Hanford Challenge Ice Cream Social” in Volunteer Park, Seattle. Not knowing exactly what to expect, I was informed by my co-worker Liz that people would be have to perform certain tasks and “earn” their free ice cream. All of these activities centered around informing people about Hanford and asking them to “take action,” either by completing a public comment about the cleanup and/or signing the Hanford Challenge petition urging Congress to build new waste tanks on the site to help safely store any excess or leaking waste from aging tanks.
The event was a great success – we had lovely weather and a steady stream of people interested in “earning” free ice cream! Ages ranged from very young children venturing with their parents, to older citizens who knew a lot about Hanford! It’s a nice way to introduce members of the public who may not know anything about Hanford to the issues facing the site and what impact it has on their lives and the region. The problems at Hanford are deep-rooted and ongoing, the more the public is aware of them and is able to participate in the process, the greater the likelihood for a safe and effective cleanup that protects everyone’s future!
By: Kathryn Sain