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Dominion and the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy announce watershed mini-grants

Recognizing an increased need for watershed improvement projects and a lack of accessible funding, Dominion, in partnership with the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC), is continuing the Watershed Mini Grants Program for the third year. Proposals are now being accepted for 2006-2007 from watershed organizations in the following 31 Pennsylvania counties: Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Blair, Butler, Cambria, Cameron, Clarion, Clearfield, Clinton, Crawford, Elk, Erie, Fayette, Franklin, Greene, Huntingdon, Indiana, Jefferson, Juniata, Lawrence, McKean, Mercer, Potter, Somerset, Tioga, Venango, Warren, Washington, and Westmoreland.
Watershed protection is one of the fastest growing areas of community-based collaboration. Throughout the country, watershed groups are playing an increasingly prominent role in environmental management. With their local focus and community base, watershed groups are building consensus and expanding participation within communities across Pennsylvania. It is not uncommon for organizations to operate on an annual unrestricted budget of less than $5,000, while at the same time implementing $100,000 projects that directly benefit communities and the environment. Watershed Mini Grants are useful tools for watershed organizations, helping to expand their capacity to administer future projects, effectively publicize and educate citizens about their work, and complete small portions of larger projects.
Nick Pinizzotto, Senior Director of WPC Watershed Programs says, “The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is proud to partner again with Dominion on this far-reaching, community-based grant program. Currently, much of the unrestricted funding available to regional watershed associations seldom covers all the costs for the state or federal grant-funded projects or administrative costs. This program provides up to $1,000 for operating expenses and up to $2,500 for promotion and outreach or restoration projects.”
The grant application and proposal guidelines may be downloaded from the WPC web site: www.paconserve.org. To have an application mailed or to ask questions regarding the application process, contact Emily Warner at the Freshwater Conservation Office in Blairsville, 724-459-0953, extension 103. Grant applications must be postmarked by December 15, 2006 and mailed to: Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, c/o Emily Warner, 246 South Walnut Street, Blairsville, Pa. 15717.
The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC) is a membership-based conservation organization established in 1932. WPC protects, conserves and restores land and water for the diversity of the region’s plants, animals and their ecosystems. Through science-based strategies, collaboration, leadership and recognition of the relationship between humankind and nature, WPC achieves tangible conservation outcomes for present and future generations. WPC has been entrusted with preserving Fallingwater®, the masterpiece home built by Frank Lloyd Wright in Mill Run, Pa.