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Applications Open for 2021 Keep Maryland Beautiful Grants

$312,500 Available for Community Beautification, Greening, and Environmental Initiatives

Photo of volunteers watering and planting flowers in urban area

2016 Keep Maryland Beautiful grant recipient Pigtown Main Street volunteers at the annual Bloom the Boulevard event

The State of Maryland in partnership with the Forever Maryland Foundation is now accepting applications for the annual Keep Maryland Beautiful grants program.

Four different grants are being offered to help volunteer and nonprofit groups, communities, and land trusts support environmental education projects, litter removal, citizen stewardship, and solve natural resource issues in urban and rural areas. The deadline to apply for funding is Nov. 12, 2020. Awards will be announced in spring 2021.

The Keep Maryland Beautiful grants will be offered in two categories: Environmental Education, Community Initiatives, and Cleanups for community groups, local governments, and nonprofits; and Land Trust Capacity, Excellence, and Stewardship for local land trusts. 

Funding for the Keep Maryland Beautiful grants program is provided by the Maryland Department of Transportation, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, the Forever Maryland Foundation, and Maryland Environmental Trust, a unit of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

The Maryland Department of Transportation has pledged $50,000 a year to the program for five years, starting in fiscal year 2018, totaling $250,000. The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development has provided more than $808,000 for more than 200 Clean Up and Green Up grant awards since fiscal year 2017, and has allocated an additional $250,000 for this year’s awards.

Grants and funding amount available are:

  • Aileen Hughes Grant: Up to $5,000 is awarded to an individual representing a Maryland land trust for outstanding leadership, partnership, and innovation in a conservation project or organization development.
  • Citizen Stewardship Grant: Up to $5,000 is awarded to schools, nonprofits, and other community organizations whose missions are centered upon directly engaging community members (especially children and young adults) in environmental education and stewardship. These grants also support organizations that demonstrate active engagement as defenders of the environment by developing innovative solutions to local environmental problems.
  • Clean Up & Green Up Maryland Grant: Up to $5,000 is awarded to local governments, community groups, and nonprofit organizations to promote neighborhood beautification and cleanliness by increasing litter removal, greening activities, community education, and citizen stewardship.
  • Janice Hollman Grant: Up to $10,000 is awarded to land trusts to increase capacity, support programming and innovation, and foster stronger, better-connected land trusts that will protect natural resources and enhance the lives of citizens and generations to come.

Fiscal Year 2020 awards included 80 grants totaling more than $307,500 for beautification projects, community cleanup activities, and environmental education programs in 20 counties and Baltimore City.


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