In 2006, CSC established the first “Green Teams” in the District of Columbia in partnership with the DC Department of Public Works and the Mid-City Business Association. Green Team crew members included persons returning home from prison who were committed to full time work but needed additional supports in order to be successful in the transition home. Green Team members participated in “green economy” job trainings, earned a Living Wage, and participated in ongoing family support services as needed. One Green Team member commented, “I spent the first part of my life tearing down my community. Now, I am helping to build it back up”.
Over the last ten years, Green Teams have evolved into Clean Teams. But the services remain focused on Cleaning, Ambassador, and Safety. Cleaning includes the basic services such as litter removal, recycling, graffiti removal, illegal poster/sticker removal, snow and ice removal, weeding, mowing grass, mulching of tree boxes and streetscapes, and improvement of the overall public space. Ambassador includes assisting business owners manage challenging situations and conversations in the service area and providing pedestrians and tourists with reliable information regarding the service area. All Clean Team Supervisors and Crew members are trained in Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) techniques and maintain professional behavior and appearance. Solution-Focused Brief Therapy techniques are a Core Practice Area of CSC’s Family Services Division. SFBT emphasizes the use of strength based, open-ended questions that help facilitate positive, solution oriented problem solving. Safety includes offering business owners, pedestrians, and the police additional eyes and ears on the streets. When possible, the Clean Team Program Director and Supervisors join other neighborhood based CSC staff at monthly Police Service Area (PSA) and Advisory Neighborhood Commission Meetings located within the respective Clean Team service area to help address public safety concerns and develop safety initiatives for each area.