Tampa Bay is widely known as an environmental recovery success story, but recent reports of diminishing seagrass meadows tell us that there’s more to be done to hold on to past gains. The good news is that civic associations, businesses, nonprofit organizations, schools and universities within the Tampa Bay watershed can help.

The Bay Mini-Grant program is managed by the Tampa Bay Estuary Program and provides funding for projects that help restore and protect the Tampa Bay estuary. The maximum award is $5,000 per project, and projects must be completed in under one year.

Previous projects have included rain garden installations, coastal cleanup events, environmental education lesson plans and field trips, native planting, oyster recycling, retention pond rejuvenation, nature documentaries, storm drain upgrades, participatory science projects, art installations and more. Projects that are particularly unique or engage the community are especially encouraged to apply.

Organizations within the watershed are eligible to apply for Bay Mini-Grant funding. Tampa Bay has a vast watershed that includes all of Hillsborough County and extends north through parts of Pasco County, south into Manatee County, east into Polk County and west through Pinellas County. Past award recipients have included nonprofit leaders, educators, filmmakers, neighborhood associations, students, artists, museum curators and researchers.

Projects should support one or more of the Tampa Bay Estuary Program’s conservation priorities: (1) clean waters and sediments, (2) thriving habitats and abundant wildlife and (3) an informed, engaged and responsible community.

Don’t delay. The application period is now through Friday, September 15. If you have a project idea but need help transforming it into a competitive application, contact Sheila Scolaro at sscolaro@tbep.org or 727-893-2765.

Interested applicants should attend the informational webinar on Wednesday, August 23 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Register for the webinar and learn more about Bay Mini-Grants by visiting the Tampa Bay Estuary Program website at https://tbep.org/bay-mini-grants.

If you’re not ready to apply for the Bay Mini-Grant, you can still support this important work by purchasing a ‘Tarpon Tag’ specialty license plate next time you update your vehicle’s registration at https://tbep.org/tarpon-tag.

Let’s keep Tampa Bay on the road to recovery!

Previous articleLighthouse Ministries Helps Those In Need
Next articleSummer Splash Event, Men’s Cookout, Lollipop Hop And More!