New York, NY (June 7, 2017)— Three Open Space Institute (OSI) supported community forest projects have received grants from the U.S. Forest Service through its Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program: Page Pond Community Forest in New Hampshire and the Catamount and Richmond Town Forests in Vermont.
These three northern New England projects were among seven chosen across the entire nation. The projects received $956,000 of the $2 million awarded by the U.S. Forest Service. The grant awards will support jobs and healthy forests in communities.
“OSI congratulates our partners on receiving competitive and scarce federal grants. Funding for these three New England community forests projects validates the importance, on a regional and national scale, of community involvement in conservation,” said Kim Elliman, OSI’s president and CEO. “The community forest movement began in New England and continues to be critical to citizens and towns there. We are proud to be a central part of this movement that is spreading nationally.”
Since 2010, OSI’s Community Forest Fund, the only dedicated source of private funding for community forests in the United States, has made grants to help kindle locally based conservation. Communities are rallying to purchase, permanently conserve, and collectively manage forests to benefit directly from the land’s many values. OSI is now recapitalizing its Community Forest Fund to continue investment in local communities and the forests that provided livelihoods, and environmental, economic, recreational, civic, and cultural benefits.
The U.S. Forest Service’s Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program is the only federal funding for community forest projects and provides grants to local governments, tribes, and qualified nonprofit organizations to establish community forests that will provide economic and environmental benefits as well as education, stewardship, and recreation opportunities. Five of the seven projects that were funded by the US Forest Service are in Northern New England.
OSI Supported Projects receiving FY ’17 federal Community Forest Awards: