Roots for Rivers Reforestation Grant and Technical Assistance Program

We are pleased to announce that The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is partnering with Sustainable Jersey and The Watershed Institute to offer another round of the Roots for Rivers Reforestation Grant and Technical Assistance Program. The program will support municipal, school district, and local non-profit and conservation organization efforts to undertake their own floodplain reforestation initiatives. Program participants will receive technical assistance to design restoration projects and funding to cover the material costs of tree/shrubs, tree protection tubes, and stakes. Projects costing between $1,000 and $20,000 are eligible. Learn more about the program below and spread the word of this opportunity using the flyer available here.


Application Information

Online Application Deadline: Friday, December 13, 2019 at 11:59pm

NOTE: This application is for municipal and school district applicants onlyAll applications must be submitted using the online application portal via the link above. You must create an account on the portal to access the application. This account is different from the account used to access your certification application.

 All other applicants should apply via The Watershed Institute. For more information regarding The Watershed Institute’s application process please contact Erin Landis, River-Friendly Coordinator of The Watershed Institute. She can be reached at

Recipient Announcement Date: Late January 2020

Informational Webinar

An informational webinar will be held Wednesday, October 16, from 1:30pm – 3:00pm, to learn about the 2020 Roots for Rivers Reforestation Grant and Technical Assistance Program. This webinar will cover:

  • Why floodplain reforestation is important and what is involved

  • How to select an appropriate site and develop a project plan

  • What technical assistance and funding is available

  • How to apply to be part of the program 

Register here. Following the webinar, the recording and presentations will be posted on the Webinar Recordings and Presentations page. on the Sustainable Jersey website.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible to participate in this program, an applicant must:

  • Be a New Jersey municipal government or school district. Funding may be passed through to a non-profit, partner organization, or contractor, but the municipality or school district must be the applicant and will be responsible for the reporting requirements. Checks will be made payable to the municipality or school district and sent to its fiscal agent.

  • Be registered or certified with Sustainable Jersey or Sustainable Jersey for Schools certification program.

NOTE: This grant & technical assistance opportunity is NOT considered part of the Sustainable Jersey Grants Program.  If you currently have an open grant from the grants program, you are still eligible to apply for this opportunity. 

Learn more about the grant's terms and conditions here.

Use of Funding

Applicants can request funding amounts from between $1,000 and $20,000. More detailed information on the use of grant funding can be found here and information on partner vendors can be found here. Information on project development can be found here.

Eligible Expenses

  • Native woody plants materials (trees and shrubs) that only include bare root stock, tublings, 1-gallon and/or 2-gallon containers

  • Tubes and support stakes to protect the plantings (Deer fences and protection against weeds/invasive species are not covered by this grant)

  • Up to two delivery fees associated with transportation of project materials

The same number of plants as tree tubes and stakes should be included in the proposed budget.

The webinar will go into more detail on the eligible plants and protection materials.


Ineligible Expenses

  • Other supplies (gloves, shovels, etc.)

  • Equipment (mower, auger, etc.)

  • Labor (or contractor) costs for planting and invasive species removal

  • Ineligible protection materials (fencing, weed mats, etc.)

  • Ineligible shrubs and trees (ornamental plants, trees in too large of containers)

  • Additional delivery fees associated with project implementation 

These ineligible expenses cannot be charged to the grant and are the fiscal responsibility of the applicant.

Selection Process

Applications will be screened using the following criteria:

  • Project budget is within the allowable grant amount ($1,000 - $20,000), grant funds are only being requested for eligible expenses (trees/shrubs, tree tubes, stakes), and the average cost per plant (including tube and stake) is $12.00 or less. Other funding sources, in-kind contributions, and donations are identified (if applicable).

  • Accuracy and completeness of project tracking and location table (defined acreage of planting area, linear feet of stream to be planted, etc.). Map and photos of site are used to enhance reviewers’ understanding of project.

  • The relative impact of the proposed project on restoring floodplains and protecting water resources.

  • Likelihood of success as demonstrated the strength of the project team and action plan.


This Grant and Technical Assistance opportunity is in partnership with:


For questions regarding the application and online portal, please contact Kaitlyn Vollmer of Sustainable Jersey at or call 609-771-3189

For project related questions, please contact Michelle DiBlasio of The Nature Conervancy at or call 908-955-0342


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