OVERVIEW: The New England Grassroots Environment Fund supports climate change and energy, food, environmental health, land and water, and living communities in the New England states.
FUNDING AREAS: Environment, civic engagement, community resilience, climate change and energy, food, environmental health, land and water, and living communities
IP TAKE: This environmental funder prioritizes small, volunteer-run nonprofits and environmental initiatives that focus on youth leadership.
PROFILE: Established in 1996, the New England Grassroots Environment Fund (Grassroots Fund) began with an evaluation of the environmental priorities of the region. Based in Newmarket, New Hampshire, the fund concentrates its work regionally by supporting New England environmental initiatives. The funder aims to “energize and nurture long term civic engagement in local initiatives that create and maintain healthy, just, safe and environmentally sustainable communities.” Grantmaking includes climate change and energy, food, environmental health, land and water, and living communities.
The foundation’s grantmaking program broadly supports community groups in New England cities and towns. It focuses its climate and energy grants on minimizing community carbon footprints, while food grants support a safe and equitable regional food system. Environmental health grants fund the prevention of toxic pollution. The funder’s land and water grants support a balance between the built environment and the wilderness, and living economies grants support behavioral changes for ecological living.
It awards seed grants of up to $1,000 for new projects and grow grants between $1,000 and $3,500 for more established groups. The foundation also maintains a harvest grant program that exists for special opportunities and remains by invitation only. Finally, the funder provides capacity building grants to youth-led initiatives, and these are the largest grants at $5,000 to $7,500 each.
Overall, foundation grants range from $250 to $7,500 each. The funder has offices in New Hampshire and Vermont, but concentrates on the entirety of New England. It funds organizations that conduct environmental work in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Groups must have annual operating budgets of less than $100,000 and have no more than two full-time paid staff members to be eligible for grants.
The Grassroots Fund accepts unsolicited grant applications from local nonprofits. Groups can apply for seed grant at any time and grow grants by March 15 and September 15 each year. It accepts letters of interests for the youth adult leaders grant program by March 12. Direct general questions to the foundation staff at 603-905-9915 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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