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Project Canopy grants available for community forestry projects

Up to $100K available for Maine towns, nonprofits
Jan 16, 2020

Augusta — Project Canopy, the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s community forestry program, will award $100,000 in grants to local governments, municipalities, educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations that support efforts to develop and maintain long-term community forestry programs.

Funded by the USDA Forest Service, Project Canopy grants are available in two categories: planning and education grants and tree planting and maintenance grants. Typical grants range from $6,000 to $8,000 and require a 50% cost-share with cash or in-kind services. Since 2015, Project Canopy has awarded more than $500,000 in funding for community forestry projects.

Project Canopy is a program of the Maine Forest Service. It encourages communities to develop project proposals that support sustainable community forestry management, increase awareness of the benefits of trees and forests, and increase the health and livability of communities through sound tree planting and maintenance.

Project Canopy Director Jan Ames Santerre provided recent examples of community projects that can benefit from Project Canopy grants. Projects of note in 2019 include Augusta ($10,000), Greenville ($3,951), and Bridgton ($8,000) to plant trees in downtown areas and town parks; and Wells ($10,000), Lubec ($7,850), and Denmark ($3,000) for management planning for community forests and related educational developments.

“In addition to helping communities with general maintenance planning, these grants allow towns to respond to threats from invasive pests such as the emerald ash borer," Santerre said. "They can also support community efforts to create more inviting downtowns and neighborhoods, and improve Maine’s cities and towns through the multitude of economic, environmental and social benefits urban and community trees provide.”

Planning and education grants have a maximum award of $10,000, while planting and maintenance grants have a maximum award of $8,000.

To be eligible to apply for a 2020 assistance grant, all applicants must attend a grant workshop before applying. The grant workshop will be held Feb. 12, via the web. The workshop will cover such topics as grant writing, project development, sustainable community forestry management, and grant administration.

Grant applications are due by 5 p.m. March 6.

To learn more about the Project Canopy Assistance program and to sign up for the grant workshop, contact Santerre at 287-4987.

More information is available on the web at


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