Susquehanna Riverlands Mini-Grants

ABOUT SUSQUEHANNA RIVERLANDS MINI-GRANTS 

 

The Susquehanna Riverlands Mini-Grant Program provides targeted funding opportunities in the form of small competitive grants, ranging from $2,500 to $15,000, towards projects that advance the mission of the Susquehanna Riverlands Conservation Landscape and focus on the following areas: (1) habitat and trail connectivity, (2) ecosystem health, (3) sustainable public access to the Susquehanna River and its surrounding natural lands, and (4) community partnership and collaboration. Projects that can demonstrate the greatest benefit and overlap between two or more of these areas are more likely to be funded. Mini-grant projects that are directly aligned with the mission and goals of the strategic plan will be given the most weight in the project ranking and evaluation process.

This mini-grant funding was financed in part by a grant from the Community Conservation Partnerships Program, Environmental Stewardship Fund, under the administration of the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Recreation and Conservation.

Important Dates

  • Letter of Intent (LOI) Due: Friday, May 6, 2022 by 5 PM
  • Invited Applicants Notified on or before: Friday, May 20, 2022
  • Application Deadline: Monday, June 6, 2022 by 5 PM
  • Mini Grant Awards Announced: Monday, June 20, 2022
  • Project Completion Deadline: December 31st , 2023

Susquehanna Riverlands Strategic Plan

All interested applicants are strongly encouraged to review the Susquehanna Riverlands Strategic Plan, which outlines our landscape’s mission, vision and goals for the future, prior to pursuing a mini-grant. Applicants can also contact Jenn Teson (jteson@lancasterconservancy.org) to discuss their project before applying.

Review & Download Strategic Plan

SUSQUEHANNA RIVERLANDS PARTNERSHIP

The Susquehanna Riverlands Partnership is a coalition of organizations working together to protect, preserve, and steward the natural lands along the Lower Susquehanna River, emphasizing connectivity, ecosystem health, and sustainable public access. For more information, visit www.SusquehannaRiverlands.com

MINI-GRANT PROGRAM MATERIALS AND RESOURCES

INTERACTIVE MAP OF PREVIOUS MINI-GRANT AWARDEES (2017 – 2019)

This map depicts some of the projects previously funded by the Susquehanna Riverlands Mini-Grant Program. Click on the red dots in the map to learn more about each project.

 

 

CONTACT

For additional questions, please contact Jenn Teson at jteson@lancasterconservancy.org or by phone at (717) 392-7891 x 204

SUSQUEHANNA RIVERLANDS 2022 MINI-GRANT PROGRAM FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT IS THE SUSQUEHANNA RIVERLANDS PARTNERSHIP?

The Susquehanna Riverlands is one of eight Conservation Landscapes supported by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) and is a partnership between the Lancaster Conservancy, which serves as the program’s external lead, DCNR, and a constellation of community organizations. The Partnership is focused on advancing four key areas outlined in the Strategic Plan: (1) habitat and trail (re)connectivity, (2) ecosystem health, (3) sustainable public access to the Susquehanna River and its surrounding natural lands, and (4) emphasizing community partnership and collaboration.

HOW DOES THE MINI-GRANTS PROGRAM WORK?

The Lancaster Conservancy, as the external lead of the Susquehanna Riverlands, administers the Mini-Grant Program with funding provided through DCNR. Single-year grant requests for a minimum of $2,500 to a maximum of $15,000 are considered for projects that work towards advancing the mission and goals of the Susquehanna Riverlands Partnership, outlined in the Susquehanna Riverlands Strategic Plan. All interested applicants are strongly encouraged to review the Susquehanna Riverlands Strategic Plan, which outlines our landscape’s mission, vision, and goals for the future, prior to pursuing a Mini-Grant. Applicants can contact Jenn Teson to discuss their project before applying.

WHAT ARE THE STEPS IN APPLYING FOR A SUSQUEHANNA RIVERLANDS MINI-GRANT?

Applicants should first review the application instructions before applying. All interested applicants must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) no later than 5 pm Friday, May 6, 2022 to be considered for funding. Following review by a selection committee, eligible organizations will be invited to submit a formal grant application that will ask for a detailed scope of work, budget, and related items due no later than 5pm Monday, June 6, 2022. Click here to preview the grant application. The review committee will make its final funding determination by June 20, 2022.

WHERE CAN I SUBMIT A LETTER OF INTENT?

Click here to submit your Letter of Intent (LOI) online.

WHAT ARE THE GRANT REQUEST LIMITS?

There is a minimum grant request of$2,500 and a maximum of $15,000.

DOES THIS GRANT PROGRAM REQUIRE A MATCH? 

Yes, a 1:1 match is required. At least 50% of the match must be in cash.

WHO CAN APPLY?

Municipalities, including municipal and local government agencies, 501(c)(3) non-profits that are registered with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Charities, and some educational entities are eligible to apply.

WHAT KINDS OF PROJECTS ARE ELIGIBLE?

In general, projects should take place within the Susquehanna Riverlands region, which is a PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources designated region that includes all municipalities in Lancaster and York Counties that touch the Susquehanna River and boroughs surrounded by these communities (see map above). Projects that occur outside this region may be considered for funding provided they have a direct, tangible benefit to the region and demonstrably advance the mission of the Susquehanna Riverlands Conservation Landscape. Projects should also address two or more of the following priorities identified in the Susquehanna Riverlands Strategic Plan: (1) habitat and trail (re)connectivity, (2) ecosystem health, (3) sustainable public access to the Susquehanna River and its surrounding natural lands, and (4) a renewed emphasis on partnership and collaboration. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Jenn Teson at jteson@lancasterconservancy.org to discuss their project before applying.

I HAVE APPLIED TO THE SUSQUEHANNA RIVERLANDS MINI-GRANT PROGRAM IN THE PAST, THIS APPLICATION LOOKS DIFFERENT. HAS IT CHANGED?

Yes! In 2019, the Susquehanna Riverlands Partnership adopted a new strategic vision that emphasizes four areas of focus: (1) habitat and trail (re)connectivity, (2) ecosystem health, (3) sustainable public access to the Susquehanna River and its surrounding natural lands, and (4) a renewed emphasis on partnership and collaboration. We are interested in supporting projects that align with two or more of these areas. This year we also moved all application processes to an online format. If you have any questions or technical issues with the online forms, please contact Jenn Teson at jteson@lancasterconservancy.org or 717-392-7891 ext 204.

WHO REVIEWS LOIs? 

A Mini-Grant Selection Committee comprised of Partnership Members will review the LOIs.

HOW WILL THE SELECTION COMMITTEE DECIDE WHICH LOIs ARE INVITED TO SUBMIT AN APPLICATION?

The Selection Committee reviews Letters of Intent primarily to confirm project eligibility. The Selection Committee may respond with tips for improving an application based on information provided in the LOI. If the Selection Committee determines your project and organization are  eligible for funding, you will receive a link to the full application.

HOW WILL THE APPLICATIONS BE EVALUATED? 

A diverse committee made up of several partnering organizations and interests will rank the applications based on the following criteria:

  • Has Sufficient Project Scope
  • Promotes Partner Collaboration
  • Provides Goals and Objectives aligned with the Susquehanna Riverlands Strategic Plan
  • Overlaps Two or More of the Four Areas of Focus (described ab0ve)
  • Provides Metrics from Demonstrating Measurable Success
  • Match Has Been Secured (cash and in-kind)

WHO DECIDES WHAT APPLICATIONS ARE AWARDED? 

A Mini-Grant Selection Committee comprised of Partnership Members will decide who will be awarded funding based on whether the project meets the above-stated criteria.

WHEN DO WE HAVE TO HAVE THE CASH MATCH AVAILABLE? 

Your cash match should be available when you list this match on your grant application. Your final grant application must include a support letter from the partner organization(s) that notes the agreed upon donation amount.

CAN A NON-CASH MATCH BE USED?

Yes. Non-cash match can include donated materials, professional time, volunteer time, and services conducted in-house for which the grantee organization does not receive compensation. Your grant application must include a support letter from the partner organization(s) that notes the agreed upon donation amount.

CAN I MATCH THE MINI-GRANT TO ANOTHER DEPARTMENT OF CONSERVATION AND NATURAL RESOURCES (DCNR) GRANT?

No. The funding for the Mini-Grant Program is provided by DCNR, specifically the Environmental Stewardship Fund. Per DCNR policy, you cannot match DCNR funds to DCNR funds.

IF AWARDED A MINI-GRANT, HOW MUCH MONEY WOULD WE GET UP FRONT?

Terms can vary, but generally you would get up to 50% of the amount up front and then 40%.  The final 10% will be provided after sufficient close out materials have been submitted.

WHAT ARE THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF THE GRANT AGREEMENT IF I AM AWARDED A GRANT?

Mini-Grant funds originally come from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) as part of DCNR’s Environmental Stewardship Fund Program. The Lancaster Conservancy, which serves as the External Lead for the Susquehanna Riverlands Conservation Landscape, is the grant administrator and requires any mini-grant recipient to comply with standards that are expressed in DCNR’s terms and conditions. For a sample contract, click here.

WHO SHOULD I CONTACT FOR MORE INFORMATION?

Jenn Teson
Lancaster Conservancy
117 South West End Avenue
Lancaster, PA 17603
jteson@lancasterconservancy.org
(717) 392-7891 x 204

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