Grow Grants

Questions about Grow grants? Listen to our webinar, "Grassroots Fund Grants and How to Apply". 

Interested in participating in our grant review process?

We believe that as a foundation we make better decisions on where and how to allocate resources if we get a broad range of perspectives and experiences weighing in. We therefore invite all of you to join us in March/April as an application reader and commit around 8 hours (stretched out over a 3 week period) to reading 7 to 10 short(-ish) online applications and give us your feedback. We have a rubric system to help structure feedback and offer webinar trainings ahead of review to explain the system, review our guiding values, provide an implicit bias training, and to share what we are seeing broadly across grassroots sustainability movements in New England.

Sign up here to be a Grant Reader for the 2019 Spring Grow Round!

Deadlines: September 15 & March 15

Grow grants are geared to established groups who are ready to expand the scope of their work. Grow groups often have 1+ year experience running community projects and are ready to take on (pieces of) local system strategy around their issue. Grants are intended to support community groups who represent the most exciting energy in the environmental movement that are not being reached by traditional funders. The Grassroots Fund interprets the word ‘environment’ broadly and will provide funding for a wide range of activities. Whole systems-thinking is critical to initiatives focused on making our environment better, healthier and more sustainable.

Grant Range:

$1,000 - $3,500

Group Eligibility Criteria:

  • Is doing community-based environmental work in CT, ME, MA, NH, RI or VT;
  • Is volunteer-driven or has no more than 2 full-time paid staff (or equivalents);
  • Has an annual operating budget of under $100,000

Examples of Grow grant projects include:

  • a community garden looking to initiate a food policy council and take on food security challenges in their community;
  • a local energy committee planning to implement a community-wide energy plan;
  • a sustainability committee establishing a time trade effort to support local resources.

The overall goals of Grow Grant program are to:

  • Increase civic engagement, volunteerism, emerging leaders and community initiatives that create healthy, just, safe and environmentally sustainable communities at the neighborhood and town level in New England;
  • Help community leaders move single issue, backyard debates to positive, inclusive, systemic, constructive, and lasting community solutions;
  • Link community-based advocacy with the work of state-wide and national organizations without losing local identity; and
  • Establish and maintain informed networks of activists across the region that are committed to building a just and equitable society.

The Grassroots Fund does not fund the following projects:

  • Lobbying or partisan political activities
  • Acquisition of land and/or buildings

  • Studies with no follow-up action
  • Publication of books or reports

  • Micro- or mini-grant programs

  • Individuals
  • For-profits

Apply for a Grow grant