Thursday, June 25, 2015

Keep PA Beautiful Celebrates 25 Years With 25 Grants For Community Improvements

In recognition of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s 25 year anniversary, the organization awarded 25 grants in 25 days to local affiliates and other tax-exempt groups across the state. The grants provided up to $1,000 for community improvement projects in their three focus areas of Prevent It, Clean It, or Keep It.
The winning projects are representative of all the different ways we can individually and collectively improve our communities including planting natives, restoring habitats, park restoration, river and community cleanups, special event recycling and so many more.
“We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate our 25 year anniversary. The Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful 25 in 25 Grant Program allows us to give back to the volunteers, communities and organizations that have contributed so much over the years to our shared mission of building clean and beautiful communities.” said Shannon Reiter, President of Keep PA Beautiful.  “We are pleased to support the efforts of such a diverse group of environmental and community stewards as they work to make their communities clean and beautiful.”
Recipients share how the 25 in 25 Grant is helping their local community:
“The 25 in 25 Grant enabled Keep Blair County Beautiful and the IRC to complete smaller projects that will have big impact on our community.  We built compost demonstration gardens to show homeowners natural and healthy way to build their soil and purchased Freon removal equipment.  The equipment will enable us to provide convenient and affordable disposal options for residents for many years to come.  Thank you Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful for helping us to make a positive impact in our communities,” stated Katrina Pope, Education and Enforcement Coordinator for the Intermunicipal Relations Committee and Keep Blair County Beautiful.
"The 25 in 25 mini-grant will provide a portion of the crucial funding needed for the success of the 4th Annual Connoquenessing Creek Cleanup. The goal of this cleanup project is to restore this important waterway back to its beautiful natural state. This funding will allow Allegheny Aquatic Alliance to continue the success of this vital project by removing the physical garbage in this 50 mile creek. We have already removed almost 150,000 pounds of garbage, including over 1,400 tires. Thank you for your support!," Christina Handley, President of the Allegheny Aquatic Alliance.
“This mini-grant helps leverage funds from other sources to create one of eighteen murals and mosaics we’re installing in a three-block area on a half street that separates our Main Street business district and our Elm Street residential neighborhood.  To compete in the market place, West Reading needs to be a unique and distinctive place to attract and retain young, creative people. Our Cherry Street Mural Corridor helps make us just such a place. Thank you,” said Dean L. Rohrbach, Elm Street Manager, West Reading Community Revitalization Foundation.
“This grant will help us to beautify Downtown Hazleton, specifically by funding additional flowers, lights, and signage for the vacant lot that is used for community events. We have already made some improvements and people are taking notice. So far the lot has been used for a Bikes, Blues, and BBQ event, and an outdoor movie. Other events, especially those associated with the seasonal farmers market, are in the planning stages. We are thrilled to be chosen for this program, and very much appreciate the support,” said Krista Schneider, Executive Director for Downtown Hazelton.
This project was funded by Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s 25 in 25 Grant Program with partial support from the Richard King Mellon Foundation.
A list of grants awarded is available online.
For more information on activities and programs, visit the Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful website.

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