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Environmental Education Mini Grant

Grants to USA K-12 Schools, Nonprofits, Organizations, and
Agencies in Eligible States for Environmental Awareness Projects

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Chesapeake Bay Trust

Deadline Date:

01/09/20 4:00 PM Receipt


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Grants of up to $5,000 to USA K-12 schools, nonprofits, organizations, and governmental agencies in eligible states for environmental awareness projects. Eligible states include Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, New York, Delaware, and the District of Columbia.

The goal of funding is to:

  1. Educate students about natural resources and their local watersheds and about how students can become environmental stewards and make a difference in watershed health;
  2. Engage school communities in education and restoration activities that benefit watershed health;
  3. Provide Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences (MWEEs) for students and teachers;
  4. Provide environmental education professional development opportunities for teachers; and
  5. Support environmental literacy goals within schools, school systems, and other educational institutions.
Project Type 1 – Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences (MWEEs) for students:

The purpose of funding is to support educating students about their local environment and how they can become stewards and have an impact in their community. To accomplish this goal the program funds projects that involve students investigating a local environmental issue, problem, or phenomenon through indoor and outdoor research culminating in developing solutions and taking action in their school or community – also known as the Meaningful Watershed Educational Experience (MWEE) model. Funds can cover a multitude of items including costs for field trips, fieldwork, transportation, substitute fees, and supplies for student projects. For more information about this project type and for project criteria, click here:

Project Type 2 – Professional Development for School Staff:

This grant program also aims to build teacher capacity and comfort in leading environmental education programs by funding the attendance to or development of professional development trainings for educators. Applicants may request funds for professional development experiences for teachers, administrators, and other school staff to build understanding of environmental content and competence in inquiry based and investigative instructional techniques. Trainings and workshops should support elements of the MWEE model, such as the investigation of a local environmental issue, using the outdoors (local communities, schoolyards and natural areas, watersheds and/or the Chesapeake Bay) as a context for learning, and/or design and implementation of an action project. For more information about this project type and for project criteria, click here:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 177245

Estimated Size of Grant:

How much can be awarded: Up to $5,000. The Trust funds up to half of outdoor field experience costs.

Term of Contract:

For non-Maryland applicants, projects must be complete by 9/1/2020 due to NOAA funding source restrictions. For all applicants, projects must starts after the notification date.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Projects must take place in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware, New York, and the District of Columbia. The Trust prefers the pre-K-12 school to serve as the lead applicant instead of a partner. If a partner does apply, the Trust requires:
1) The participating school’s name
2) An explanation of why the partner is applying instead of the school
3) Letter of commitment from the participating school(s). Please refer to the Trust’s Letter of Commitment Guidance and Policy document. Exception: All District of Columbia Public Schools are encouraged to have a local partner or another fiscal entity serve as the lead applicant.

The following types of partners may serve as lead applicants when the school cannot for some reason:
- 501(c)3 Private Nonprofit Organizations;
- Faith-based Organizations;
- Community Associations;
- Service, Youth, and Civic Groups;
- Municipal, County, Regional, State, Federal Public Agencies;
- Soil/Water Conservation Districts & Resource Conservation and Development Councils;
- Forestry Boards;
- Public and Independent Higher Educational Institutions.
- Applicants representing after-school and summer programs are eligible to apply in cases in which there is a very strong connection with a specific school’s pre-K-12 curriculum

The Trust does not fund the following:
-Endowments, deficit financing, individuals, building campaigns, annual giving, research, fund raising or venture capital;
-Mitigation or capital construction activities such as structural erosion control measures;
-Political lobbying;
-Reimbursement for a project that has been completed or materials that have been purchased;
-Budget items that are considered secondary to the project’s central objective. These items include, but are not limited to, cash prizes, cameras and video equipment;
-Promotional collateral such as pens, key-chains, t-shirts, etc.;
-Funding is generally restricted to projects on public property, private community-owned land and
conservation easements, unless otherwise specified in a grant program.

Pre-Application Information:

Deadline date: January 9th, 2020
Decision date: March 6th, 3030
Project start date: No earlier than March 7, 2020

The Trust requires that all non-Title 1 schools provide funding for at least half of their field trip or experience costs. Title 1 schools running school-wide Title 1 programs are permitted to request full costs for bay and watershed education related field trips.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

To apply online, click here:

For questions, please contact Emily Stransky:,
410-974-2941 x101

Grant Coverage Areas:

Chesapeake Bay Watershed

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Delaware;   Maryland;   New York;   Pennsylvania;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   West Virginia