Welcome to the Pennsylvania Environmental Council's Mini-Grant and Award Programs


Mini-Grants - PEC provides grant awards ranging from $500 to $10,000 through five programs with specific goals that include topics such as land and water trails, outdoor recreation, resource protection and conservation, and related topics. Each program is designed to support projects that are initiated locally by municipal and nonprofit organizations. 

Western Pennsylvania Environmental Awards Program - PEC and Dominion Energy host this regionally acclaimed program that recognizes and honors outstanding achievements in a wide range of environmental initiatives throughout Western Pennsylvania, and pays tribute to those who have demonstrated a commitment to environmental excellence, leadership, and accomplishment in their respective fields. 

For detailed programmatic information and deadlines, about these opportunities see the individual applications below.

Once you select a submission opportunity you must then create a free Submittable account to get started. Your account will allow you to save/review your work before submitting. 


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2020-2021 Pocono Forests and Waters Conservation Landscape Mini Grant Program

Instructions & Guidelines

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General Information

The Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC) was awarded a total of $60,000 from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) through their Community Conservation Partnership Program (C2P2) to administer the 2020-2021 Pocono Forests and Waters Conservation Landscape (PFW) Mini Grant Program. The DCNR funding is provided through the Environmental Stewardship Fund administered by the Bureau of Recreation and Conservation. The PFW mini grant is administered by PEC as a reimbursement funding program.

Mini grants of $2,000 to $10,000 that support and advance the goals and objectives of the PFW will be considered. All projects, related costs and funding must conform to the guidelines of the DCNR C2P2 Program: www.dcnr.state.pa.us/brc/grants/index.aspx

Mini Grants require a 1:1 match in the form of cash and/or eligible non-cash (in-kind) services, or a combination of both cash and in-kind.

  • Cash Match - No portion of the cash match can originate from DCNR funding.
  • In-kind Match - the value of municipal labor and/or professional services is equal to the hourly billable rate multiplied by the number of hours performing that service or job. The value of volunteer in-kind will be valued at the current Independent Sector Volunteer Rate for Pennsylvania at the time the work was performed please visit http://www.independentsector.org/volunteer_time for current volunteer value.
  • For more information on eligible and ineligible match and costs visit: http://www.docs.dcnr.pa.gov/cs/groups/public/documents/document/DCNR_017033.pdf

To score better during the review process, applicants should provide proof of match commitment.

As mentioned above, the 2020-2021 PFW Mini Grant Program is a reimbursement funding program. Costs should be described in the budget and will be paid only to the extent that they are incurred by the Grantee in performance of the Project Scope of Work. Grantees can receive reimbursement distributions as they are incurred but reimbursement requests must include documentation and proof of expenditures. Grantees are also required to submit a mid-grant progress report and a final Success Story (template will be provided). All Project deliverables (if applicable) must also be submitted at the close-out of the grant. 

Grants are awarded to assist with projects that will be undertaken after the award of the grant, not to retroactively reimburse the cost of projects that have already begun or been completed prior to the grant award. Also no match can be expended prior to award of the grant, you cannot retroactively use match.


Important Dates:

• Grant Round Opens: March 12, 2020

• Application Deadline: May 1, 2020

• Grant Awards Announced: May 29, 2020

• Contracts executed/Mini-Grant Kick-off meeting: June 1, 2020

• Projects Begin: June 1, 2020

• Project Completion: June 1, 2021


Questions

For project and content related questions contact:

For technical questions regrading completion of this application contact:

  • support@submittable.com
  • Monday-Friday, 11:00am - 7:00pm, with limited availability on weekends. 


Completing the application: It is possible to complete the application during multiple sessions. Be sure to save as you go and before you end your session. Please answer all questions, complete the budget worksheet, and upload necessary documents before your final submission. 


Eligibility

Who is eligible?

Eligible applicants include non-profit organizations with tax-exempt status 501(c)(3), municipalities, counties and educational institutions.

Non-profit organizations must submit proof of non-profit status and be registered with the PA Department of State Bureau of Charitable Organizations.

What kind of project is eligible?

Projects must be located within the PFW region which includes the counties of Carbon, Lackawanna, Luzerne, Monroe, Pike and Wayne.

Projects should advance the goals and objectives of the Pocono Forests and Waters Conservation Landscape (see below).

PFW Goals and Objectives

Vision

Protect and sustain the natural resources of the Pocono Forests and Waters Conservation Landscape


GOAL: Conserve Critical Lands and Waters - Identify important natural landscape areas for acquisition, easements and other land protection measures.

OBJECTIVES:

• Identify priority parcels for acquisition

• Conduct landowner outreach

• Promote land stewardship

Example of Projects:

• Initiate a master watershed stewardship program

• Protect waterways by addressing AMD and non-point source pollution


GOAL: Engage our Communities through Promoting our Story - Engage communities to promote, enhance, and conserve local natural, cultural, and outdoor recreational resources.

OBJECTIVES:

• Increase public awareness of PFW CL

• Support programs that connect residents to outdoor recreational opportunities

• Coordinate with existing economic development and eco-tourism plans

Example of Projects:

• Promote recreational opportunities and use of land and water trails and conserved lands

• Implement Open Space and Greenway Plans


GOAL: Create Trail Connections - Identify and create greenway and trail connections to public lands and communities throughout the landscape.

OBJECTIVES:

• Promote and encourage trails and trail development

• Maintain regular communication between and among trail community

• Work with Key Partners (i.e. DCNR, Game Commission) on key access links for trails

Example of Projects:

• Analyze, prioritize and close trail gaps

• Enhance and provide trailheads and trail amenities


Application Submission

Applicant Responsibility:

  • Identify projects that support the goals and objectives of the PFW.
  • Secure local match at a minimum ratio of 1:1 (can be cash, in-kind services, or a combination of both).
  • Provide letters of commitment from partners providing local match; letters should describe the type of program assistance, match amount and how that partner is contributing to the success of the project.
  • Demonstrate the ability to complete project on time and within budget.
  • For non-profit applicants: provide current proof of IRS 501(c)3 non-profit status and registration with the PA Bureau of Charitable Organizations. If you are not able to provide this documentation, a qualifying entity must serve as your fiscal agent.
  • Successful applicants will be required to enter into a mini grant agreement with PEC. All mini grant agreements will also require compliance with DCNR grant requirements.


Application Review

Applications will be ranked by a review committee composed of PFW CL Steering Committee members. 

Applicants will be ranked based on how well the project:

  • Supports and advances the goals and objectives of the PFW CL
  • Promotes partner collaboration
  • Identifies and secures required match
  • Develops a realistic budget
  • Demonstrates that project will have measurable outcomes and be successful

The review committee reserves the right to request additional proposal information if they feel such information is crucial to the ranking process.


Pennsylvania Environmental Council