Wednesday, December 22, 2010

This grant money is for the birds

If you've followed this blog, you know that I feel that eco-friendly gardening goes hand-in-hand with appreciating the birds and the bees . When you "garden green", you eliminate chemicals and use more native plants, and both of these steps have a natural tendency to attract more birds, bees and butterflies.

But it works both ways. Sometimes the love of birding and wildlife comes first, encouraging a homeowner to create an eco-friendly garden to attract wildlife. And sometimes the eco-friendly garden comes first, and the visiting wildlife is just a welcome and wonderful surprise.

In any case, organizations such as the Cornell Lab of Ornithology understand the importance of encouraging people to appreciate birds. With that in mind, they are offering mini-grants to help fund neighborhood bird appreciation events in urban areas.

The grants can be used for any creative program using the arts, science, community service and greening to encourage an understanding of birds and to get people to become involved in conservation.

In 2010, Miriam's Kitchen, a soup kitchen in Washington, D.C., used a grant for a month-long program for their homeless clients, which included: bird yoga, origami, poetry, art, as well as learning about 16 bird species and collecting data.

In 2009, Garland Hayward Youth Center in Princess Anne, MD used a mini-grant to plant raised beds and install bird houses and bird feeding stations to enhance wildlife habitat around their Center.

Also in 2009, Queen City Creamery in Cumberland, MD had a community greening and bird program with the local public libraries.

What is a Celebrate Urban Birds event? These are neighborhood events featuring activities involving birds, community service, art, greening, and science. Celebrate Urban Birds mini-grants could be used to support a bird-activity day at a local museum, after school program, library, or community center, or fund art and gardening activities at your club, business, school, senior center, or neighborhood. 

Organizations working with underserved communities are strongly encouraged to apply.

For more information on the grants, go to

Also from their website, Urban Gardening for Birds


  1. We are participating in a bird and bee program with the Mount Vernon Triangle Community Improvement District in NW DC. The initiative includes the planting of native species, the introduction of bird houses on roof tops, and the installation of rooftop honeybee hives donated by DC Honeybees. These hives will be sited on the roof of the CID offices. As an added neighborhood benefit the CID, in turn, has donated an additional hive to the Walker Jones Farm, located on the property of the Walker Jones School. DC Honeybees will be donating time to both organizations to manage the hives and teach the children the benefits of honeybees as pollinators.

  2. Thanks for the help to spread the word about the Celebrate Urban Birds project. We are delighted that you read about past winners and found the ones in your area! There are a lot of resources available free for any group or individual who wants to participate, whether or not they finally receive a mini-grant!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Website by Water Words That Work LLC