Do you have an idea to connect people with nature? Do you want to teach people about water quality, fish and wildlife habitat or support healthier communities?
A conservation education grant from Metro’s Nature in Neighborhoods program could help your idea blossom. Small grants up to $25,000 and large grants up to $100,000 are available for projects that connect neighborhoods with nature.
A wide variety of projects can fit the bill, such as nature education for school-aged children, job training or internships for nature-based careers, or programs that give groups the tools to connect people with nature.
Centro Cultural de Washington County won a $100,000 Nature in Neighborhoods grant in 2014 for its STEAM after-school and summer program, which teaches science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics to Latino youth who struggle with core academic subjects. See a video about the program.
Centro’s application to Metro was successful because it met the grant’s purpose of diversifying conservation education programs in the region with culturally specific programming. Through this grant, Centro is boosting its environmental science curriculum in partnership with Clean Water Services, Pacific University and local school districts. The partnerships allow STEAM program leaders to blend academic learning with hands-on activities rarely available in classroom settings.
All conservation education programs that benefit Metro-area residents are eligible. Individuals, community groups, neighborhoods, nonprofits, schools and school groups, government agencies, faith groups and service groups with nonprofit or other tax-exempt status can all apply.
Fill out a simple application by Jan. 13, 2015. Your proposal will be reviewed by Metro staff and people with backgrounds in conservation education, grant management, finance, volunteer coordination, project planning and community partnerships. Finalists will be invited to submit a detailed application. In May, the Metro Council will award about $700,000 to conservation education projects across the region.
To learn more and ask questions, attend a grant workshop from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 5 at Metro Regional Center, 600 NE Grand Ave., Portland.
Contact grants coordinator Crista Gardner: [email protected]