Hawaii News

State offering community grants for urban forestry projects

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The Department of Land and Natural Resources announces up to $100,000 in community grants is available to organizations across Hawai‘i to support projects that protect and enhance the state’s urban and community trees and forests.

Eligible applicants for the Kaulunani Community Partnership Grants include community groups, schools, private organizations and government agencies. Project examples can range from tree planting and tree care, developing technological tools for urban and community forestry or supporting professional development, and education and public outreach.

Applications are sought from across Hawaiʻi for project support of between $5,000 and $20,000. The state agency states that qualified applicants will demonstrate the principles of equity, access and environmental justice in project partnerships.

According to the state agency, Kaulunani has awarded grants to hundreds of nonprofit groups, schools, community organizations, parks, museums and arboretums. As of 2023, over $4.6 million dollars has been awarded to over 450 projects through these cost-share grants, which have been matched by over $9 million dollars in cash and in-kind contributions. 

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“Urban forests are critical for supporting socio-ecological health and resilience within the context of a changing climate,” said Dr. Heather McMillen, Hawai‘i’s Urban Forester and Kaulunani Program Coordinator. “In order to realize the full potential of these benefits, we need to expand urban forest areas and increase tree canopy coverage across Hawaiʻi. Investing in our urban forests improves human health while also raising awareness and knowledge of trees so community members can better maintain them. The Community Partnership grant funding aims to identify and empower community-driven solutions to these issues.”

The deadline to submit proposals is July 20, 2023, at 11:59 p.m. Hawai‘i Standard Time. Awards will be announced on Aug. 14. Click here for a grant application.

For questions about the Kaulunani grant program, click here.

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For additional questions, email Dr. Heather McMillen at: [email protected].

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