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Funding for STEM and Environmental Programs

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Funding for STEM and Environmental Programs

As many readers may already be aware, AquaGrove offers a Fundraising Resources Guide for schools and organizations at the start of their AquaGrove program. The guide provides resources for grant opportunities related to sustainability and education, as well as tips and templates for requesting funding from private foundations and sponsors. While the guide is available to those who purchase an AquaGrove system, we also gather funding opportunities throughout the year to share with educators who are just getting started with sustainability and STEM learning programs.

Every year, funding sources and cycles are subject to change, and for this reason AquaGrove periodically provides updates regarding new funding opportunities to ensure that educators and growers are accessing the latest and greatest in funding resources. 

Based on our most recent research, here are a few grant opportunities worth reviewing as you build your environmental education and aquaponics learning programs:

Quadratec Cares 'Energize the Environment' Grant Program – The program provides funding to individuals and groups who have a love for the environment and want to help improve it, offering two $3,500 environmental grants per year – one each in the spring and fall. Grants are awarded to an individual, group or organization currently pursuing a program or initiative designed to benefit the environment. Some examples of the funder’s focus areas include community environmental educational projects and youth educational engagement events.  The application format is an easy 1,000-1,600 word essay which makes it great for first-timers. The essay should be brief but detailed enough to describe you or your organization, what inspires you, what you are looking to accomplish and how you will apply the funds to your project. All essays must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. EST on June 30th to be considered for the fall grant, and 11:59 p.m. EST October 30th for the spring grant. Each winner will be notified within 20 days following the end of each grant's submission window.

Westinghouse Charitable Giving Program – The program provides financial support in one or more areas, including education (with a focus on STEM disciplines), environmental sustainability, and community safety and vitality. Grants defined as education with a focus on STEM are those used to improve knowledge and literacy with a focus in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math among students, teachers, and the general public. Grants defined as Environmental Sustainability are those used to enrich programs with the goal of preserving or restoring land, air, water, or biodiversity. If your organization’s request meets the criteria of one or more of their strategic areas of giving, they welcome you to apply for a grant. Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations and schools within 50 miles of a Westinghouse site are eligible; a map of sites is available on their website. Westinghouse accepts applications on a rolling basis, and there is no maximum on the amount requested.

Toshiba America Foundation – The foundation has funding opportunities for elementary, middle, and high school teachers who are passionate about making science and mathematics more engaging for their students. Grades K-5 applications are accepted once a year on October 1st. Application deadlines for grades 6-12 for up to $5,000 are 6/1, 9/1, 12/1, 3/1. Grant requests of more than $5,000 are reviewed twice a year. Applications for grants of more than $5,000 are due November 1st and May 1st each year.

In addition to grants specifically designed to fund education programs in sustainability and STEM, aquaponics projects can fit into multiple programs within a grant, including: Knowledge and training of agricultural production systems; beneficial species in agricultural production systems; aquaculture and fish studies; development of sustainable farms; water quality and conservation.  In other words, depending on the goals of your program, you may be eligible for grants from several sources with varying areas of interest; for this reason, it is important to keep your eyes and lesson plans open to new grant opportunities – you may be surprised by how easily you can expand your aquaponics learning program and develop new and focused objectives with the right sponsors and funding partners.

For updates on funding opportunities and receive the AquaGrove e-newsletter, send us a request here.  To stay connected and have AquaGrove updates added to your social news feed, join us on TwitterInstagram and FaceBook.