Sarasota Bay Estuary Program Accepting Applications for Bay Partner Grants
SARASOTA, FL – The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program (SBEP) is accepting applications for the 2014 Bay Partner Grants Program with a deadline of March 3. The purpose of the annual program is to promote environmental education, community involvement and stewardship to improve the overall quality of Sarasota Bay and its tributaries. Organizations can receive up to $3,000 for projects that benefit Sarasota Bay. SBEP has awarded $232,000 in grants to more than 113 organizations since 2003.
Schools, businesses, non-profit organizations, academic institutions, churches, and civic groups in Sarasota and Manatee counties are eligible. The watershed boundaries are from Anna Maria Sound to the Venice Inlet as well as all of the barrier islands. Some of the prior projects have included wildlife gardens and landscaping featuring Florida native plants, micro-irrigation projects, land contouring to create bioswales, signs that promote Bay-stewardship, and education programs.
Bay Partner Grant applications must be received at the SBEP offices by 4pm on Monday, March 3 to be eligible. Applications can be emailed as a Word document or PDF file to Sara Kane at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can learn more about the grant program online by visiting the Get Involved page on the SBEP website at sarasotabay.org. The website also lists the nine grant projects that were funded for 2013. Inquires are welcome at 941-955-8085 or email@example.com.
The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program is dedicated to restoring the area's greatest natural asset—Sarasota Bay. Its unique program strives to improve water quality, increase habitat and enhance the natural resources of the area for use and enjoyment by the public. Sarasota Bay is one of 28 estuaries in the United States that have been named by the U.S. Congress as an "estuary of national significance." Partners include Sarasota County, Manatee County, City of Sarasota, City of Bradenton, Town of Longboat Key, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Southwest Florida Water Management District, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.