Funding Opportunities

Sometimes funding a Meaningful Watershed Education Experience can be outside of your classroom budget. If you are looking for a way to finance field trips for your students or buy supplies to install an outdoor classroom on your school grounds, the list below will link you to relevant grant programs in your state.

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Maryland’s Aquatic Resources Education (ARE) Grants Program provides small grants to fund aquatic-based learning activities for schools -- in classrooms, on school grounds, or for off-campus field experiences for students.

Organization
Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Who Should Apply
Funding is offered to assist public and private schools (preK-12) and environmental education centers that are part of the public school system.
Amount
Up to $2,500 per year for individual schools for learning activities and stewardship projects tied to the curriculum that benefit Maryland’s aquatic resources. Up to $5,000 to serve multiple schools through school districts or county environmental or outdoor education centers that are part of the public school system.
Deadline
ARE Grants have a rolling deadline annually beginning July 15 and extending throughout the school year, until all available funding has been awarded. But please allow 4-6 weeks for approval before you start your project.
State(s)
Maryland
Contact

The Chesapeake Bay Trust recognizes that the recovery of our local streams, rivers, and the Bay – the future health of our environment, economy, and communities – depends on an environmentally literate and engaged populace. The Environmental Education Grant Program funds initiatives and programs that advance environmental literacy and result in students gaining the knowledge, skills, and appreciation for nature to take responsible actions to protect and restore their local environment. The Trust has made available $300,000 for this grant program in Fiscal Year 2021. Individual applications may be submitted for amounts detailed in the RFP. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Trust staff to discuss proposals prior to the deadline and determine which funding level is most appropriate for your project idea.

Organization
Chesapeake Bay Trust
Who Should Apply
Maryland school districts, nonprofit organizations, public agencies, higher education institutions, community associations, and more. See RFP for full list.
Amount
Track 1 Single-Year Requests: There are three types of single-year proposals for a grant period of March 2021 – August 2022: a) Environmental Literacy Programs (up to $40,000), b) Environmental Literacy Planning (up to $40,000), and c) Outdoor Classrooms (up to $20,000). Track 2 Multi-Year Requests: Applicants may request up to $40,000 per year for three years (maximum is $120,000 total award over years 2021-2024) for projects that focus on the establishment or enhancement of a systemic MWEE program that will be embedded into the curriculum of a targeted grade or course at all schools across a school district. Applicants can submit two year or three year requests but all applicants for multi-year requests must talk with Trust staff prior to formulating proposals. For request $5,000 and under, please consider applying for a Trust Environmental Education Mini Grant.
Deadline
The 2020 deadline has passed. This grant program will likely reopen in December 2021.
State(s)
Maryland
Contact

The purpose of the Fiscal Year 2021 Healthy Schools Grant is to increase the Office of the State Superintendent of Education’s (OSSE) capacity to support schools with implementing high-quality 1) health education and physical education; and 2) place-based education programs. Applicants are highly encouraged to attend one of the live virtual pre-application conferences taking place on Feb 26th, March 2nd, and March 4th. Information on how to access the meeting is listed on Page 4 of the Request for Applications document: https://osse.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/osse/publication/attachments/FY21%20Healthy%20Schools%20Grant%20RFA.pdf

Organization
Office of the State Superintendent of Education, Government of the District of Columbia
Who Should Apply
OSSE will accept applications from entities in the District of Columbia having a 501(c)(3) status with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Amount
Eligible entities may apply for an award up to $120,000.
Deadline
April 6, 2021, at 3 p.m.
State(s)
Washington, DC
Contact

Administered through Department of Environmental Protection, funds are used for projects ranging from creative, hands-on lessons for students, teacher training programs, and outdoor learning resources to conservation education for adults. Funds can be used to provide education resources, materials, equipment, and transportation to support creative, hands-on environmental education lessons for students.

Organization
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
Who Should Apply
Public and private schools.
Amount
Mini-Grants up to $3,000 General Grants (Require 20% Match): Level I up to $20,000, Level II up to $85,0000
Deadline
December (Annual)
State(s)
Pennsylvania
Contact

DOEE seeks eligible entities to help control, prevent, and remediate nonpoint sources of polluted runoff to District waters and the Chesapeake Bay by funding small-scale schoolyard conservation projects and training teachers to use these new schoolyard assets. The program also seeks to engage, educate, and empower District residents to become stewards of the District's waters and the Chesapeake Bay.

Who Should Apply
The institutions below may apply for these grants: Private enterprises; Nonprofit organizations, including those with IRS 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) determinations; Faith-based organizations; and Universities/educational institutions.
Amount
The amount available for the project is approximately $65,000 for a 24-month period.
Deadline
The deadline for application submissions is March 5, 2021 at 11:59pm
State(s)
Washington, DC
Contact

The Dominion Energy Charitable Foundation will award up to $1.5 million in 2020 through our competitive Environmental Education and Stewardship grants program. Eligible organizations include nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations and public and private K-12 schools in communities served by Dominion Energy companies (see website).

Organization
Dominion Energy
Who Should Apply
Non profit organizations and K-12 schools
Amount
The maximum grant award is $25,000 for nonprofit organizations in areas where we have significant assets or customer base. If the project narrative and budget do not adequately support the requested funding amount, lesser amounts may be awarded. The maximum grant for K-12 schools is $5,000.
Deadline
The application period ended September 11, 2020 and Dominion Energy will announce 2020 recipients in December.
State(s)
Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia
Contact

The NOAA Chesapeake Bay Watershed Education and Training (B-WET Chesapeake) grant supports programs that provide hands-on environmental education about issues affecting the Chesapeake Bay watershed for students through “meaningful watershed educational experiences” (MWEEs) and related professional development for educators who serve formal K-12 audiences. This year's funding announcement focuses on two Priority Areas under the theme of Capacity Building for MWEEs: (1) Statewide K-12 Environmental Literacy Initiatives, which advance state efforts toward systemic MWEE implementation at the school district level, and, (2) Regional MWEE Network Building Initiative, which supports the development of systemic MWEEs in school districts and the networking of these school districts, their partners, and the larger environmental education community.

Organization
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Who Should Apply
K-12 public and independent schools and school systems, institutions of higher education, community-based and nonprofit organizations, state or local government agencies, interstate agencies, and Indian tribal governments
Amount
up to $200,000 annually (regional) up to $100,000 annually (statewide)
Deadline
March 1, 2021 (annual)
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact

Clif Bar Family Foundation Small Grants support programs with measurable goals that strengthen food systems and communities, enhance public health, and safeguard the environment and natural resources.

Who Should Apply
Innovative small and mid-sized 501c3s in the US.
Amount
Up to $7,000
Deadline
February 1st (Annual), June 1st (Annual), and October 1st (Annual)
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact

EPA Environmental Education Grants support environmental education projects that promote environmental awareness and stewardship and help provide people with the skills to take responsible actions to protect the environment. This grant program provides financial support for projects that design, demonstrate, and/or disseminate environmental education practices, methods, or techniques.

Organization
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Who Should Apply
Schools and school systems, colleges and universities, nonprofit organizations and state and local government agencies. (A teacher's school district, an educator's not-for-profit organization, or a faculty member's college or university may apply, but an individual teacher is not eligible)
Amount
Minimum award is $15,000 and the maximum is $100,000
Deadline
February (Annual)
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact

The Chesapeake Bay Trust Mini Grant Program supports meaningful outdoor learning experiences around a watershed issue investigation including field trips, fieldwork, student-led action projects, schoolyard habitat projects as well as teacher professional development trainings and programs to advance environmental literacy.

Organization
Chesapeake Bay Trust
Who Should Apply
Schools, nonprofit organizations, community associations, faith-based organizations and more in Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay watershed portions of D.C., Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Amount
Up to $5,000.
Deadline
January (Annual), and June (Annual)
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact

The NOAA Office of Education has issued a competitive funding opportunity for education projects designed to strengthen the public’s and/or K-12 students’ environmental literacy to enable informed decision-making necessary for community resilience to extreme weather events and other environmental hazards. Successful projects will advance NOAA’s mission and build the environmental literacy necessary for community resilience by focusing on geographic awareness and an understanding of Earth systems and the threats and vulnerabilities that are associated with a community’s location.

Organization
NOAA Office of Education
Who Should Apply
Institutions of higher education; other nonprofits, including informal education institutions such as museums, zoos, and aquariums; K-12 public and independent schools and school systems; and state, local and Indian tribal governments in the United States
Amount
Proposed projects should be between two and five years in duration and have total budget requests of $250,000 to $500,000 for all years of the project.
Deadline
ELG typically opens on an annual basis in January-February
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact

NEEF offers a variety of grants and awards to help organizations engage their local community to improve the environment, increase diversity, and expand their work locally. We routinely highlight individual and group commitment to nature through education and service. In 2019, NEEF provided nearly $700,000 in grants and awards to educational (both formal and informal) and public land partners across the country.

Organization
National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF)
Who Should Apply
Nonprofits
Amount
Up to $5,000
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact

NOAA is excited to be working with the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) to offer a grant opportunity to bring together two great programs: NOAA B-WET and the U.S. Department of Education 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC). These grants will enable experienced environmental education providers to work with 21st CCLC sites to deliver authentic STEM experiences emphasizing the unique assets and expertise of NOAA. This opportunity is open to all school districts (not only those in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed) in states that have indicated support for the "Student Goal" (MWEEs) as a part of the Chesapeake Bay Agreement, including: Pennsylvania, Maryland, District of Columbia, Delaware, and Virginia.

Organization
NOAA
Who Should Apply
K-12 public and independent schools and school systems, institutions of higher education, nonprofit organizations, state or local government agencies, interstate agencies, and Indian tribal governments
Amount
$40,000 to $100,000 ($20,000 to $50,000 per year of implementation)
Deadline
Currently closed, check back on website.
State(s)
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia
Contact