Apply for a Greening Western Queens Fund Grant
In the fall of 2009, North Star Fund launched the "Greening Western Queens Fund," a new $7.9 million initiative to invest in energy-efficiency and environmental projects in the Western Queens community affected by a July 2006 electric power outage. This program is supported by funds from the community's settlement with Con Edison. The Public Service Commission of the State of New York selected North Star Fund to administer the project because of our expertise in facilitating community led grantmaking processes.
We are currently accepting applications for Year 3 of the Greening Western Queens Fund. To apply for a Greening Western Queens Fund grant, you must submit an application to the North Star Fund by the deadline.
Application Deadline: Thursday, September 20, 2012 at 5pm.
GENERAL ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
The Greening Western Queens Fund will consider groups that:
- Have 501(c)(3) status or have a fiscal sponsor with 501(c)(3) status.
- Demonstrate knowledge and ability to work with and involve the diversity of communities that were directly affected by the July 2006 Con Edison outage in western Queens, particularly those that are historically underrepresented in environmental projects (e.g. communities of color, youth, low-income communities, immigrants). A map outlining the directly affected neighborhoods of western Queens can be found here.
- Have a track record of successful work in funding area, or specify local partner organizations with demonstrated success.
Applications submitted jointly by multiple organizations will be considered, however one organization should be designated as the main applicant organization.
Although we value the work, we will not consider support for:
- Individual efforts
- One-time events
- Requests for endowments, deficit financing, or scholarships, fellowships, loans or grants to individuals
- Research that is not part of an implementation plan
- Organizations that do not comply with federal, state or local equal opportunity statutes
- Activities to elect specific candidates for public office
PROJECT CRITERIA AND PRIORITIES
All projects to be funded by the Greening Western Queens Fund should:
- Contribute to a more environmentally sustainable western Queens.
- Result in projects with visible and lasting impact in the affected western Queens neighborhoods.
- Ensure that products and outcomes are public, accessible and beneficial to residents of the affected areas.
- Involve and educate a diversity of community residents in the planning, implementation and evaluation stages of projects, particularly those that are historically underrepresented in environmental projects (e.g. communities of color, youth, low-income communities, immigrants). This includes ensuring that historically underrepresented communities benefit directly from the impact of grants made.
- Ensure that Fund resources do not duplicate or replace current commitments of government agencies.
- Describe and incorporate a plan to ensure sustainability of impact beyond the grant period.
- Be completed within one year from the time the grant is awarded.
Projects must be undertaken exclusively within the Queens communities affected by the July 2006 outages in ConEdison's LIC network.
YEAR THREE GRANTMAKING CATEGORIES
I. Urban Forestry
In Year 3, we expect to make grants totaling up to $1.5 million in the urban forestry category. The Fund will consider urban forestry applications in two areas: planning and planting; and sustainability. During the first year of the Greening Western Queens Fund, the Greening Western Queens Fund Advisory Board selected the City Parks Foundation to be the lead agency in charge of the implementation of urban forestry projects in the affected areas of Western Queens. Potential applicants for the urban forestry category must contact the City Parks Foundation to ensure that a potential project fits within the existing groundwork laid to enhance the urban forest in Western Queens.
Urban Forestry proposals should be developed in coordination with City Parks Foundation and should ensure the longevity of existing trees and new trees planted. All tree planting supported by Greening Western Queens should be in public areas (e.g. streets) or publicly accessible private property (e.g. church or business parking lots). The Greening Western Queens Fund will consider grants up to $1,500,000 in the urban forestry category in year three.
- Planning and Planting We will fund one-year projects that fit with the emerging community forestry plan in Western Queens as developed by City Parks Foundation and other partners. For more information, please refer to the Application Instructions.
- Sustainability We will fund one-year projects that promote the long-term sustainability of urban forestry and other greening projects in the affected areas through clear and achievable tree stewardship plans and community education that fit within the emerging community forestry plan for Western Queens. This category is intended to fund the creation of a "tree trust" or Western Queens greening alliance that will be community-led and provide for stewardship of the planted trees and other green infrastructure projects for years to come. For more information, please refer to the Application Instructions.
II. Greening Infrastructure and Other Greening Projects
- Greening of local community and public sites. This includes efforts to improve existing sites, as well as creating new green spaces. Special consideration will be given to the planning and/or creation of green roofs and other newly created green spaces that demonstrate multiple benefits, for example, energy conservation and increased local food production. Examples of community and public sites include: community centers, schools, libraries, etc.
- Conversion of public or private sites to public green spaces. Any projects that might acquire land, or convert land use, must describe and ensure that they will conduct environmental due diligence activities. In addition, applicants in this category should demonstrate knowledge and experience with required partnership with relevant city agencies and other institutions.
- Other project types that address key environmental issues may also be proposed for consideration as smaller grants in the $5,000 - $20,000 range.
If you have additional questions about the application process, please review the common questions. If you still have questions after reviewing this section, please contact the North Star Fund office at 212-620-9110.