Civic Engagement

Urban Paradise Guild: Volunteerism Unleashed!


1. Engage 10,000+ Volunteers per year.

Every project is designed to:

2. Make Miami a better place to live today.

3. Make Miami's future safer from Sea-Level Rise and Climate Change.


Urban Paradise Guild (UPG) has fielded hundreds or thousands of Volunteers every year from 2009-2014.

Now, we are ready to grow!


UPG is a Volunteer-Powered Organization: 100% of our Staff and Workers are Volunteers!

In the city with the lowest levels of Volunteerism in the USA, UPG is thriving!


We have been recognized ***three times*** as

Community Partner of the Year for Service-Learning by Miami Dade College (Wolfson, Hialeah & North Campuses). UPG is the student's choice because they know they make impacts, and they learn while working.


UPG succeeds because we reach across barriers that have fragmented our community into racial and economic silos. Our Volunteer staff represent virtually every part of the community.


Instead of saying "do as we say" we bring people together to solve problems, and lead by example.

We don't cover the Volunteers with Corporate Logos.

We bridge the gaps between government bureaucracies and the people.

We engage students in experiences beyond academic constraints.


UPG's independent paths to Volunteerism make the impossible a reality.


Working together, we have planted thousands of trees, mangroves, dune plants and wildflowers, creating many acres of native habitat. We've protected far more acres from Invasive Exotics.

We’ve built Organic Gardens for low-income families, planted a Food Forest, and we are preparing to do much more.


All this has been accomplished on a shoestring through hard work, creativity, and an amazing Volunteer Staff, with support from our Partners.


Our approach is bold:

It takes work and sweat to fix problems. We can’t just talk them to death.

UPG offers Volunteer Opportunities 8x per week!


Now it is time for us to do more.


To scale up, UPG must professionalize.

We must hire staff and build conventional Non-Profit capacities alongside our unconventional and effective Volunteer-Powered model.


Imagine what we can accomplish with MORE resources, bigger projects, and the capacity to engage more Volunteers!


To do this, we will need to get far more grants.

With this Accelerator, we will allocate funds for a dedicated grant-writer to work closely with our Volunteer Staff, and funds to leverage strategic grants.


If you want to see Volunteers, it is time to Unleash UPG!


Please support UPG, and share this with your friends.

Thanks for reading, and for your support!

Who are you?

Urban Paradise Guild, Miami non-profit 501c3, Founded 2008

Missions include
Urban Forestry
Urban Agriculture
Experiential Education
Urban Planning & Public Policy

Facebook 3000+ Photos

How does this project impact the issue you selected?

Community Engagement + Volunteerism allow us to impact virtually all the issues identified in the Our Miami Report.

UPG has a uniquely effective Volunteer-Powered organizational model.

We need to scale up in order to engage more Volunteers. To do so, we need the resources to professionalize.

Goal: engage 10,000+ Volunteers every year.

Shaded Pedestrian/Bike Paths enable safe transit and exercise.
Organic Gardens allow Healthy Choices.
Education creates economic opportunities.

What data points from The Our Miami Report does your project address?

Civic Engagement: UPG has thousands of mostly young Volunteers.
Environment & Parks: UPG has ongoing projects that improve 7 locations. Sweat equity is invested 8x per week. All fight Sea-Level Rise.
Experiential Education helps students and adults learn how to learn. Engagement retains talent.

UPG Projects (Gardens + Pedestrian/Bike Trails + Volunteer Work) Improves:
Healthy Choices
Economic Opportunities
Housing Affordability
Pedestrian/Bike Friendly + Transit Access

Please give examples of your project's success.

New grants allow UPG to add professional staff and resources.

We increase Recruiting and Engagement leading to increases in Volunteerism.

Improved Experiential Education leads to greater satisfaction and more Repeat Volunteerism and Staff Retention.

More resources available for UPG Projects enables greater impacts. We become more effective at protecting Miami from Sea-Level Rise.

Success increases popularity + "brand awareness", and helps us to get more funding.
Repeat from top.

Organization Name (or individuals name) Urban Paradise Guild


62 votes
Idea No. 54