Dallas – The Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC) has announced the opening of the 2023 PA Water Trails Mini-Grant cycle. Grants are available on a competitive basis for projects that implement the PA Water Trail Program’s eight guiding principles:
Partnership • Stewardship • Volunteerism • Education • Conservation
Community Vitality • Diversity • Wellness and Well-being
Proposed projects must advance program goals such as creating recreational opportunities for all Pennsylvanians on Water Trails; developing trails that support sustainable use of natural resources; increasing and improving physical and psychological access to Water Trails; and connecting water trails to land trails or to other culturally significant community assets.
Eligible applicants include registered non-profit organizations and public entities (such as a county, municipality, or municipal agency) and all projects must occur on or for a designated Pennsylvania Water Trail (view map here: https://www.pawatertrails.org/pa-water-trails). Applicants can request up to $5,000 and project proposals must include a 1:1 match (cash or in-kind).
All applications must be submitted online. Applications and instructions are now available online at: https://pecpa.org/apply
Applications are due by 5:00 PM on November 3, 2023.
PEC is hosting an optional virtual pre-application meeting on Friday, September 22, 2023 at 10 AM. Registration is not required. Interested applicants can join the meeting at this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81421035428
Pennsylvania’s 29 water trails link outdoor recreation and water conservation efforts. Since 2008, PEC, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC), and the National Park Service have worked together to promote and maintain the Pennsylvania Water Trails Program’s network of creeks and rivers. The PA Water Trails Program provides technical assistance, shares education and resources, and facilitates opportunities for networking and peer-to-peer learning for water trail managers. On average, PEC supports between 6 and 10 projects under this program per year. Over the years project outcomes have included improved way-finding signage and safety messaging, inclusive cultural storytelling kiosks, water trail promotional material, up-to-date water trail maps, new and enhanced physical access sites, streamside habitat improvement, and environmental education and introduction to paddling opportunities for youth and underserved community members.
PEC has administered the PA Water Trail Mini-Grant program since 2017. Mini-grant funding is financed in part by a grant from the Community Conservation Partnerships Program, under the administration of the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Recreation and Conservation. Therefore, applicants should note that mini-grants may not be used as match for other DCNR-funded projects.
For information about other grant funding opportunities for motorized and non-motorized boat access development or enhancement projects, please visit the PFBC’s Boating Facility Grant Program website (https://www.fishandboat.com/About-Us/Grants/Pages/BoatingFacilityGrantProgram.aspx), DCNR’s Community Conservation partnerships Program Grant Program website (https://www.dcnr.pa.gov/Communities/Grants/pages/default.aspx), and PEC’s Statewide Waterways Access Grant Program application page at www.pecpa.org/apply.
Tali MacArthur, 570-285-8013, email@example.com