Due to economic difficulties brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Mississippi Forestry Commission is seeking to further assist communities in the state by waiving the requirement for local match for the 2020 Urban & Community Forestry Grant. While not required, proposals which include matching contributions from the local community (grantee) may potentially be more competitive for the awarding of funds.
The Urban & Community Forestry Grant Program was created to aid in the development of long-term, self-sustaining urban and community forestry programs. In a typical grant year, funds are available on a 50 percent federal/50 percent non-federal matching basis through competitive grant proposals. Funds may be awarded to units of local government, non-profit organizations, or educational institutions. The 2020 Proposal Information Package is attached, and applications are due August 15, 2020.
An important goal of Mississippi’s Urban & Community Forestry Program is to inspire or enhance local urban and community forestry programs with an emphasis on increasing local capacity, volunteer involvement, planning, training and continuing education. Communities seeking to obtain, regain, or maintain and grow designations through Arbor Day Foundation recognition programs (Tree City USA, Tree Campus, and Tree Line) will find this grant program particularly helpful and receive priority consideration. (Also to assist communities this year, the Arbor Day Foundation has waived the requirement that an Arbor Day observance be held in 2020.)
As we have all been forced into new routines of telework and social distancing, we see people valuing the ability to get outside and seeking to use public greenspaces now as much as ever. You probably appreciate the environmental, economic, and social benefits of trees. A growing body of research reinforces another benefit we intuitively know – that trees have a positive impact on human health. Your effort to invest, manage, and grow the green infrastructure of your communities and the state is an important work on behalf of our residents and quality of life. This is a challenging time, but the good news of managing for healthy community trees is on your side and has become even more relevant and apparent. We are also here to assist you!
For more information about the Urban & Community Forestry Grant Program, please visit mfc.ms.gov/programs/urban-community-forestry/urban-and-community-forestry-program/.
If you have questions or would like to discuss your proposed project, please do not hesitate to call me at (601) 213-6683.
Yours in service,
Misty T. Booth
Urban & Community Forestry Coordinator
Mississippi Forestry Commission
660 North Street, Suite 300
Jackson, Mississippi 39202