South Nation Conservation’s (SNC) popular Community Environmental Grants Program has traditionally encouraged and supported community events across the Conservation Authority’s Eastern Ontario watershed jurisdiction that promote recreational use of our rivers, protect the environment, or celebrate our natural heritage.

Since 2015, SNC has awarded over $25,000 through its Grant Program to community groups and non-profit organizations, helping to host various fundraisers, river races, community clean-ups, environmental fairs, and fishing derbies.

SNC allocated $10,000 to be distributed through the Grants Program in 2020, but many community events are now cancelled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

To help local community groups and non-profit organizations access these funds, SNC has amended the Program’s guidelines and eligibility criteria for this year to include the following community environmental stewardship initiatives:

Tree and Shrub Planting: 

  • Funding up to $300 to help plant a native caliper-sized tree, or several potted stock trees or shrubs in a public community space.
  • Also includes SNC staff support for planting activities, including site plan preparation and species selection.

Community Garden: 

  • Funding up to $300 to help create or upgrade community gardens in public community spaces.
  • Applicants are responsible for work on community gardens.

“Although some of our favourite annual partnership events are off the books for this year, adding trees or community gardens are safe environmental enhancement projects that the whole community can both learn and benefit from, and we’re happy to support these projects,” explained John Mesman, SNC’s Communications Lead.

Recipients will be required to follow the most current public health guidelines and will need to describe measures taken to protect people and manage risks due to COVID-19. Proposed activities are not to be undertaken in the form of community volunteer events.

Information on SNC’s Community Environmental Grants Program can be found at, or by calling 1-877-984-2948.

“We’re looking to hear from our usual community partners and people on locations in need of extra trees,” added Mesman. “Whether it be a park, community building, library, or fire hall, we’re hoping to hear from people on where trees are needed most in our neighbourhoods, so that we can help get more larger trees in the ground in our communities.”

Applications are accepted year-round and are reviewed by SNC’s Communications Committee. Applicants are encouraged to reach out to before applying to make sure that proposed projects are eligible and safe.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Kelsey Smith, Stewardship and Outreach Assistant, [email protected], 1-877-984-2948.