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Bay Mini-Grants

Grants to Florida Nonprofits and For-Profits
to Conserve and Protect the Tampa Bay Estuary

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Tampa Bay Estuary Program (TBEP)

Deadline Date:

09/17/18 3:00 PM Receipt


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Grants of up to $5,000 to Florida nonprofit organizations and for-profits to promote environmental stewardship and restoration. Applications will be accepted for community-based environmental education and restoration projects that focus on the Tampa Bay Estuary. The program seeks to foster an environmental ethic and promote community stewardship of the bay.

The Tampa Bay Estuary Program (TBEP) is a partnership of local governments and state and federal environmental agencies that was formed in 1990 to develop a conservation and management plan for Tampa Bay. In addition to conducting research and implementing strategies for bay restoration, TBEP also develops programs to educate citizens about ways to prevent water pollution and protect Tampa Bay.

The Bay Grants program supports community-based restoration and education projects focusing on the Tampa Bay Estuary. Empowering citizens through programs such as this helps foster an environmental ethic and promote community stewardship of the bay.

A guiding objective of Bay Grants is to mobilize as many segments of the public as possible. The Tampa Bay Estuary Program therefore encourages applicants to develop proposals in conjunction with clubs and neighborhood associations, business and trade organizations, community and environmental groups, and school districts. Projects or campaigns that have long-term applicability, and that may serve as models for addressing bay issues, will receive priority consideration.

Projects must address bay problems and priority issues as identified in the Proposal Categories listed below. They should promote public involvement in solutions for bay protection and restoration. Activity must be focused in Hillsborough, Manatee, or Pinellas counties. While projects by students and for students will be considered, they must include a direct means for adult or youth education, or a direct ecological benefit to the bay watershed; activities that exclusively benefit a single class will not be funded.

Proposal Categories:

- Water Quality - Examples: environmental landscaping practices; "best management practices" for agriculture; innovative retention/filtering techniques.

- Habitat Restoration and Protection - Examples: restoration of natural shorelines/enhancement of seawalls; projects addressing seagrasses, mangroves, coastal and freshwater wetlands, and other estuarine habitats; marine debris reduction/recycling initiatives.

- Fish and Wildlife Conservation - Examples: awareness of threats to wildlife from monofilament line; protection of seagrass beds; education on fish and wildlife habitat.

- Bay Awareness and Education - Examples: programs for schools, YMCA groups, Scouts or other youth organizations; programs that directly involve youth in solutions to bay problems; programs directed at disadvantaged youth.

- Dredged Material Management or Spill Prevention - Examples: volunteer oil spill response teams; beneficial or innovative uses of dredged materials.

- Invasive Species - Examples: Eradication of invasive plants or animals; education about harmful aquatic invasive species and how to prevent their spread.

Of special interest are projects that foster creative partnerships (projects that pair groups such as commercial/recreational fishermen, developers/environmentalists).

An educational Bay Mini-Grant project should:
- Clearly define its target audience and include a way to measure success.
- Ensure school groups focus the project to educate more than one class.

A Bay Mini-Grant that is focused on restoration should:
- Explain the restoration area clearly including size of area and location.
- Include how volunteers and/or partner organizations will be invited to participate.
- Describe how maintenance and monitoring of project area will be conducted, and who will do it.

Expenses - Items the TBEP may pay for include (but are not limited to):
- Tool rentals
- Postage
- Native landscaping plants
- Project-related printing
- Meeting room rentals
- Portable toilet rentals
- Film and photo processing
- Project-related signage
- Materials (i.e. water quality sampling kits, supplies to produce educational materials)
- Volunteer food within reason (i.e. light lunches, refreshments, bottled water)

Special Criteria Habitat Restoration Award:
This award is up to $10,000. Projects must include community involvement component and result in quantifiable habitat restoration increases. Project examples include shoreline planting, installation of oyster domes and creation of a living shoreline.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 174431

Estimated Size of Grant:

The Bay Mini-Grants limit is $5,000.

Special Criteria Habitat Restoration Award – this will be an award up to $10,000.

Term of Contract:

Projects must begin within six months and be completed within one year.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Groups and organizations from Hillsborough, Manatee, and Pinellas Counties as well as sections of Pasco and Polk Counties may apply.

Project must be in the Tampa Bay watershed.

Both nonprofit and for-profit organizations are eligible.

Applicants may submit as many proposals as they like; however, only one proposal per applicant may be awarded. Proposals for the same project will be funded no more than two times in a 5-year period.

Proposals seeking funds for ongoing administrative support of established programs will not receive consideration. Costs not allowed include: reimbursement for costs outside the grant's scope of work, purchase of commercial software and hardware, contingency funds, depreciation, entertainment, purchase or printing of t-shirts or other clothing, fines and penalties, bad debts, interest and financial costs of borrowing, attendance at conferences and meetings, lobbying expenses.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications for Bay Mini-Grants must be submitted by 3:00 PM September 17, 2018.

Funds will be awarded by mid-December.

Matching funds are not required, but proposals showing matching fund commitment through in-kind services such as volunteer hours are encouraged.

Grant monies are dispensed through reimbursement of expenses related to the grant project.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply Online:

Direct questions to:
Misty Cladas
(727) 893-2765

If submitting a hard copy, please mail or deliver completed proposal to:
Bay Mini-Grants / Attn: Misty Cladas
Tampa Bay Estuary Program
263 13th Avenue South, Suite 350
St. Petersburg, FL 33701

Grant Coverage Areas:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Florida: Tampa Bay Watershed (Hillsborough, Manatee, and Pinellas Counties as well as sections of Pasco and Polk Counties)