RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., June 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- In the spirit of true National Pollinator Week celebration, Bayer today announced the first round of organizations that will receive funding to establish forage for pollinators across the nation. Nearly 100 projects were submitted in response to the request for proposals for the first round of funding, which were reviewed and evaluated by the inaugural Feed a Bee steering committee. Ultimately, 58 projects in more than 30 states and Washington, D.C., have been chosen as the first to receive awards ranging from $1,000 - $5,000.
Earlier this year, Bayer announced its latest Feed a Bee initiative to facilitate forage plantings in every state by the end of 2018 by distributing $500,000 to organizations across the country. These funds were made available to organizations working to combat the issue of limited pollinator forage found throughout the country and to provide a tangible solution to this challenge.
"It's thrilling to see so much interest around the country in such a short amount of time," said Dr. Becky Langer, project manager, Bayer North American Bee Care Program. "We're more than halfway to accomplishing our goal after the first round of proposals with more than a year and a half left in the initiative. It's rewarding to see organizations across the country come together with one common goal: providing quality nutrients for pollinators. We look forward to seeing all the creative project ideas yet to come!"
The 58 forage projects, which include establishment of new pollinator forage and habitat restoration, will take place throughout the remainder of the year, following the official kick off Saturday, June 17, at the Washington Youth Garden in Washington, D.C. Bayer joined the Garden, a program of the Friends of the National Arboretum; the U.S. Forest Service; the Americas for Conservation and the Arts; the Woodsy Owl Conservation Corps; and Sweet Virginia Foundation, an educational partner of Feed a Bee that provides free honey bee resources to teachers and students around the world, for the first Family Garden Day of 2017. Families of the community gathered to learn about the importance of honey bees and other pollinators and planted the first flowers that will begin the restoration process of the Garden's Butterfly and Pollinator Garden. After the planting, families explored pollinator health through hands-on learning stations, including investigating the Garden's two hives, digging in the compost worm bin and running a relay race in beekeeping suits to become true "beeks."
"The funding provided by Feed a Bee is instrumental in restoring our Butterfly and Pollinator Garden, which serves as a valuable tool to ensure young people who visit our grounds walk away understanding the value of protecting our country's pollinators," said Nadia Mercer, Washington Youth Garden program director. "We have been sharing knowledge of butterflies and other pollinators for over forty years and look forward to many more."
This event served not only as a celebration of National Pollinator Week, but also as recognition of the effort being done across the county in support of the 2015 Pollinator Health Strategic Plan, put in place by the White House Pollinator Health Task Force.
"We are proud to be doing our part in promoting the task force's goal of restoring or enchaining 7 million acres of forage by 2020," Langer said. "I'm glad we can aid in implementing the White House strategy coast to coast, beginning in the city that made pollinator heath a national priority."
Round one of grant recipients include:
- Auburn University, Alabama
- IVM Partners, Arkansas
- Social Advocates for Youth, California
- McKeever Family, California
- Auburn School Park Community Garden, California
- Living Coast Discovery Center, California
- Mystic Middle School, Connecticut
- The Rotary Club of Cape Coral, Florida
- Camp Viola, Georgia
- Oglethorpe County Middle School, Georgia
- Doc's Healing Hives and Honey Incorporation, Georgia
- Idaho Department of Fish and Game, Idaho
- Friends of Camas National Wildlife Refuge, Idaho
- Blackburn College, Illinois
- North Central College, Illinois
- Wesselman Nature Society, Indiana
- Sustainable Communities Network/Ballew Family Farms, LLC, Kentucky
- Riverside Municipal Golf Course, Maine
- Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, Maine
- Friends of Mount Auburn Cemetery, Massachusetts
- Alice Ferguson Foundation, Maryland
- IVM Partners, Maryland
- Macomb Community College Bee Club, Michigan
- Bay Midland Pheasants Forever, Michigan
- Shooting Star Native Seeds, Minnesota
- Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center, Minnesota
- Missouri Prairie Foundation, Missouri
- Lakewood Hills Homeowner Association, Missouri
- Hickory Hollow Farmstead, Missouri
- Farmyard Education Foundation, New Jersey
- U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service/Friends of the Montezuma Wetlands, New York
- Bethpage State Park, New York
- SUNY Delhi, New York
- Hurd Orchards, New York
- Columbus Elementary School, New York
- Jack Britt High School, North Carolina
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge, North Carolina
- Columbus County Beekeepers Association, North Carolina
- United Prairie Foundation, North Dakota
- Little Miami Conservancy, Ohio
- The Ohio State University, Ohio
- St. Benedict Catholic Church, Oklahoma
- Equinox Agribusiness, LCC, Oregon
- Loyalhanna Watershed Association, Inc., Pennsylvania
- The Land Trust for Tennessee, Tennessee
- IVM Partners, Inc., Tennessee
- Borderlands Research Institute, Texas
- City of New Braunfels PARD, Texas
- Gideon Lincecum Chapter – Texas Master Naturalists, Texas
- Utah State University Extension, Utah
- Belmont Ridge Middle School, Virginia
- Downriver Golf Course/City of Spokane, Washington
- Washington Youth Garden/Friends of the National Arboretum, Washington, D.C.
- The Outdoor Education Center of For Love of Children, West Virginia
- Iowa County Recreation and Prairie Restoration, Wisconsin
- Woodland Dunes Nature Center and Preserve, Wisconsin
- Red Mountain Ranch, Wisconsin
- Town/County of Menominee, Wisconsin
Feed a Bee is one of several programs sponsored by Bayer's Bee Care Program, continuing its nearly 30 years of supporting bee health. For more information on Bayer's bee health initiatives, please visit: http://beehealth.bayer.us. You can also follow and share with us on Twitter @BayerBeeCare, on Facebook at facebook.com/BayerBeeCareCenter and view photos on Flickr.
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