Flower near river and bridge from NEEF grantee project
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NEEF Awards Grant Funding to Public Lands Impacted by COVID-19

The National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF) is pleased to announce the awardees for the 2020-21 Restoration and Resilience COVID Recovery Fund grant. Thanks to major support from Toyota Motor North America, International Paper, and the Hilton Effect Foundation, NEEF is providing over $100,000 in grant funding to support 46 public lands sites impacted by increased use during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“COVID-19 has made a significant impact on our lives, and public lands are no exception,” said Meri-Margaret Deoudes, president and CEO of NEEF. “Federal and local agencies and organizations have struggled to maintain public lands due to reduced staff and volunteer resources, as well as a dramatic increase in visitation during this time of social distancing. With the Restoration & Resilience COVID Recovery Fund, we can help restore these special places by distributing resources and mobilizing volunteers as needed.”  

Volunteer Rich Freeman repairs hand railings at Lynn Camp Creek Bridge in Southwest Virginia (photo: Piedmont Appalachian Trail Hikers (PATH)

First established in 2018, NEEF’s Restoration & Resilience Grant has provided monetary support for improving public lands and developing strategies to make those lands more resilient to future disasters. To date, NEEF and its partners have given over $260,000 in Restoration & Resilience Grant funding to land trusts and foundations across America, providing them with necessary resources to mobilize community volunteers and educate participants about the importance of their actions and their relationship to the long-term sustainability of local public lands. 

With the 2020-21 Restoration and Resilience COVID Recovery Fund, NEEF is able to further refine its support for public lands directly affected by COVID-19. Standard eligibility restrictions were relaxed to reach as wide an audience as possible, including both public and private land to which the public or patrons have a reasonable expectation of relatively unrestricted access. Applicants were required to describe the impact of COVID-19 on the public land site and how their project would address this impact. 

The following groups will receive up to $2,500 to fund improvement projects on America’s public lands:

Conservation Projects 

  • Adkins Arboretum, Ridgely, Maryland
  • Bolsa Chica Conservancy, Huntington Beach, California
  • Branch Brook Park Alliance, Newark, New Jersey
  • California State Parks Foundation, San Francisco, California 
  • Charles River Conservancy, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Cottonwood Canyons Foundation, Cottonwood Heights, Utah
  • Douglas-Hart Foundation, Mattoon, Illinois 
  • Dunwoody Nature Center, Dunwoody, Georgia
  • EUREKA! McConnell Science Museum, Grand Junction, Colorado 
  • Friends of Long Hunter State Park, Hermitage, Tennessee
  • Friends of Panthertown, Inc., Cashiers, North Carolina
  • Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, Sandpoint, Idaho
  • Friends of the Lost Coast, Whitethorn, California
  • Friends of the North Fork of the Shenandoah River, Woodstock, Virginia
  • Governors Island Alliance, Inc., New York, New York 
  • Idaho Conservation League, Boise, Idaho
  • Institute for Environmental Solutions, Denver, Colorado 
  • Kennebunkport Conservation Trust, Cape Porpoise, Maine
  • Maine Appalachian Trail Club, Portland, Maine 
  • Marine Park Alliance, Brooklyn, New York
  • Mississippi River Water Trail Association, St. Charles, Missouri 
  • Mojave Desert Land Trust, Joshua Tree, California
  • Natural Lands Trust, Media, Pennsylvania
  • Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, Cleveland, Ohio 
  • North Shore Community Land Trust, Haleiwa, Hawaii 
  • Ozaukee Washington Land Trust, West Bend, Wisconsin
  • Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit, New Jersey
  • Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers, Basalt, Colorado 
  • Rock Creek Conservancy, Bethesda, Maryland 
  • San Diego Mountain Biking Association, San Diego, California 
  • Save Habitat and Diversity of Wetlands (SHADOW), Renton, Washington 
  • SOLVE, Portland, Oregon 
  • Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy, Superior Charter Township, Michigan
  • Sudbury Valley Trustees, Sudbury, Massachusetts
  • USDA Forest Service, Norwood Ranger District, Norwood, Colorado
  • Waltham Land Trust, Waltham, Massachusetts
  • Westmoreland Sanctuary, Mount Kisco, New York
  • Willamette Riverkeeper, Atlanta, Georgia

Accessibility Projects 

  • Door County Facilities and Parks, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
  • Friends of Long Hunter State Park, Hermitage, Tennessee
  • Idaho Trails Association, Boise, Idaho
  • Kent Land Trust, Kent, Connecticut
  • Land Trust of North Alabama, Huntsville, Alabama
  • Maine Appalachian Trail Club, Portland, Maine
  • Michigan Legacy Art Park, Thompsonville, Michigan
  • San Diego Mountain Biking Association, San Diego, California
  • Sequoyah State Park, Hulbert, Oklahoma
  • South Yuba River Citizens League, Nevada City, California
  • Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy, Superior Charter Township, Michigan
  • Sudbury Valley Trustees, Sudbury, Massachusetts
  • Timucuan Parks Foundation, Jacksonville, Florida

Maintenance Projects 

  • Botanical Garden of the Piedmont, Charlottesville, Virginia
  • Charles River Conservancy, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Eastern Interior Field Office, Fairbanks, Alaska
  • Friends of Long Hunter State Park, Hermitage, Tennessee
  • Friends of Panthertown, Inc., Cashiers, North Carolina
  • Friends of the Lost Coast, Whitethorn, California
  • Friends of the North Pikes Creek Wetlands, Bayfield, Wisconsin
  • Hermann Park Conservancy, Houston, Texas
  • Hot Springs National Park, Hot Springs, Arkansas
  • Idaho Conservation League, Boise, Idaho
  • Idaho Trails Association, Boise, Idaho
  • Kennebunkport Conservation Trust, Cape Porpoise, Maine
  • Kent Land Trust, Kent, Connecticut
  • Kisatchie National Forest, Pineville, Louisiana
  • Louisville Parks Foundation, Louisville, Kentucky
  • Maine Appalachian Trail Club, Portland, Maine
  • Marine Park Alliance, Brooklyn, New York
  • Mohonk Preserve, Inc., New Paltz, New York
  • North Shore Community Land Trust, Haleiwa, Hawaii
  • Piedmont Appalachian Trail Hikers, Greensboro, North Carolina
  • Potomac Appalachian Trail Club, Round Hill, Virginia
  • Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers, Basalt, Colorado
  • San Diego Mountain Biking Association, San Diego, California
  • Shelby Farms Park Conservancy, Memphis, Tennessee
  • Somerset County Park Commission, North Branch, New Jersey
  • Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy, Superior Charter Township, Michigan
  • Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards (SAWS), Asheville, North Carolina
  • Teaneck Creek Conservancy, Teaneck, New Jersey
  • The Nature Connection, Hotchkiss, Colorado
  • The Sawtooth Society, Inc., Hailey, Idaho
  • Tree Advisory Committee, Norwalk, Connecticut
  • Viles Arboretum, Augusta, Maine
  • Willamette Riverkeeper, Atlanta, Georgia

Cultural and Historical Preservation Projects 

  • City of Loveland Parks and Recreation Foundation, Loveland, Colorado
  • San Diego Mountain Biking Association, San Diego, California
  • Tahoe Heritage Foundation, South Lake Tahoe, California 

Learn More about the Restoration and Resilience COVID Recovery Fund Projects

For more information on the projects funded through NEEF's Restoration and Resilience COVID Recovery Fund, click the image below to visit our story map, with photos and information on the grant projects.

For more information about other funding opportunities from NEEF and our partners, please visit the Grants section of our website. 

 

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