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Grants to Pennsylvania Nonprofits, Municipalities, Counties, and Districts for Stream Conservation Initiatives


Geographic Focus

USA: Pennsylvania

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Coldwater Conservation Planning and Implementation Grant

Coldwater Heritage Partnership (CHP)

Agency: Foundation

GrantWatch ID #149187

Grant Description

Grants of up to $7,500 and grants of up to $10,000 to Pennsylvania nonprofit organizations, municipalities, counties, educational institutions, and conservation districts to develop plans for the protection of local streams. Applicants must contact program staff prior to applying. Funding is intended to ensure that productive, naturally occurring fisheries have healthy and sustainable ecosystems. The goal of the plans is to identify potential problems and opportunities for stream conservation and to implement solutions.

The Coldwater Conservation Plan grant provides funding to:

  • Gather existing data about coldwater ecosystems;
  • Identify potential impacts, threats, problems and opportunities affecting coldwater streams;
  • Formulate a plan of action for proposed conservation and protection strategies; and
  • Build community awareness and support for the conservation of coldwater streams. 

Coldwater Conservation Implementation Grants:

  • Implementation grants should be projects identified in completed Coldwater Conservation, Watershed or Rivers Conservation Plans. Potential projects must enhance, conserve, or protect the coldwater stream in which a coldwater conservation plan was originally completed. Other plans and reports created through another program or organization may be used as eligible documents for applying for an Implementation grant.
  • Examples of eligible projects are listed below, although other projects may be eligible. Please contact the CHP program director to discuss your project before applying.
    • In-stream aquatic wildlife/fish improvement structures
    • Stormwater best management practices
    • Agricultural best management practices, like stream bank fencing
    • Acid deposition abatement and alkaline addition
    • Education and/or outreach
    • Programs that increase public awareness of watershed issues and provide hands-on learning experiences
    • Natural stream channel and bank restoration projects that maintain or improve water quality

Coldwater Conservation Planning and Implementation Grants may be used to pay for equipment, materials, meeting expenditures, construction activities and other services to implement recommendations.

Coldwater Conservation Planning and Implementation Grants proposals that meet the following criteria will be given priority:

  • Project will occur in a watershed that contains streams with naturally reproducing trout populations. Priority will be given to streams that contain native brook trout, followed by those that contain wild trout of other species. Stocked trout streams are of low priority unless it is shown that improvements to the stream will directly benefit native and/or wild trout. Visit the PA Fish & Boat Commission’s website to find current trout stream designations:
  • Project will occur in a watershed listed as special protection waters within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Chapter 93 or have the potential to be upgraded. This information can be found at:
  • Streams and other water bodies in project area are generally open to the public for recreational activities including angling;
  • Project demonstrates significant partnerships, volunteer involvement, and promotes opportunities for citizen science and engagement;
  • Local watershed organizations, TU chapters, county conservation districts or academic institutions (rather than consulting firms) take the leading role in the implementation of the project; and
  • Proposed project demonstrates benefits to coldwater fish species as well as to the local community’s economic, recreational, aesthetic characteristics or objectives.

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  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Organizations that have 501(c)3 non-profit status in Pennsylvania, such as watershed associations, land trusts, Trout Unlimited chapters, conservancies, sportsmen groups, educational institutions and conservation organizations are eligible to apply. Municipalities, municipal authorities, counties, and conservation districts may also apply.

Organizations that do not have 501(c)3 non-profit status must identify a non-profit organization that will administer the finances for the grant (a pass-through organization).

Pre-Application Information:

All proposals must be received via email by Friday, March 4, 2022 at 4:00 PM. If you do not receive email confirmation of your application within 1-2 business days, it has not been received.

Please contact the CHP program director to discuss your project before applying.

Plan preparation should include a public participation process, which serves to inform stakeholders and build community consensus for the conservation of the coldwater stream. Two public meetings are required.

Matching funds (1:1 ratio) of either cash or in-kind contributions, such as volunteer time or donated goods and services that directly tie to the development/implementation of the Coldwater Conservation Plan are required.

For a program overview, click here:

Additional Funding Information:

Estimated Size of Grant:

The maximum amount of funding per grant request is $7,500 for planning projects and $10,000 for implementation projects.

Term of Contract:

The proposed project must be completed along with the final report and budgetary information within 18 months of the grant award.

Contact Information:

Email applications to Rachel Kester at

Rachel Kester, Program Director
Coldwater Heritage Partnership Program
595 E. Rolling Ridge Drive
Bellefonte, PA 16823
(814) 359-5233

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