The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation has announced grants totaling $2.2 million in support of community-led wetland, stream, and coastal restoration projects across the nation.
With support from government agencies and the Alcoa Foundation, FedEx, Southern Company, and Bank of America, fifty-eight grants were awarded through the foundation's Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Program to address water-quality issues in priority watersheds and improve wildlife habitat. The grantees were selected from more than two hundred and twenty applicants based on the potential of the project to provide educational opportunities for youth and ecological, cultural, and economic benefits to the community.
Grant recipients include the Arroyo Seco Foundation, whose Rainbow Trout Restoration Project for the Arroyo Seco of Southern California will help restore rainbow trout populations in Los Angeles County, Angeles National Forest, and the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument; the Atlanta-based Emerald Corridor Foundation, whose Proctor Creek Rain Garden Partnership will engage neighborhoods in Northwest Atlanta in creating a rain garden demonstration project; the University of New Orleans, which will team with local partners to rebuild, renew, and improve approximately twenty-five acres of freshwater–intermediate marsh in the Bayou Sauvage and Big Branch National Wildlife Refuges; Tree Pittsburgh, whose Meeks Run Restoration Project will improve trail conditions, remove invasive species, and plant three hundred native trees over three seasons on thirty acres in the Montour Woods Conservation Area; and the Memphis-based Wolf River Conservancy, which will remove sixty-five acres of invasives and plant fifteen hundred trees at four target properties along the Wolf River in urbanized sections of the city.
"The Five Star and Urban Restoration Program is such a wonderful example of a successful community-focused conservation effort," said NFWF executive director and CEO Jeff Trandahl. "The program is in its seventeenth year, so it represents a long-term commitment to environmental challenges. And because a major program component is engaging communities in conservation, not only do we see the conservation benefits of the individual projects, but we also see the tremendous rewards of involving and educating citizens in the restoration and protection of clean water and healthy fish and wildlife habitat in their own communities."
For a complete list of grant recipients, see the NFWF website.