The 2012-2013 academic year proved to be another successful year for The Green Initiative Fund. TGIF introduced the TGIF Mini-Grant Program, an opportunity for UC Berkeley students, staff, and faculty to apply for TGIF Grants in the amounts of $500-$2,000 in October and November. TGIF hoped to award up to $20,000 in mini-grants. The goals of the mini-grant program were 1) to fill a gap in fall funding for sustainability projects and 2) to finance projects of smaller scope and shorter timeline.
The mini-grant program proved successful. TGIF received twenty-one mini-grant applications, eleven by the October deadline and ten by the November deadline, requesting a total of $34,000 in funding. TGIF selected twelve projects, awarding a total of $17,525. Five projects were second phases or additional plans for existing TGIF projects, while seven were new projects. As of June 1, 2013, four mini-grant projects were completed, with the remaining eight slated to complete by mid-December 2013. Due to the success of the inaugural mini-grant program, it will now be a permanent grant cycle offered annually by TGIF.
TGIF has speculated that the addition of the fall mini-grant program led to a decrease in spring TGIF Grant Applications. TGIF received twenty-eight original abstract submissions- fourteen early abstract submissions, sixteen final abstract submissions, with two being resubmissions of early abstracts. The applicants requested a total of $589,000 in funding. The application and funding request numbers were down from 2012′s numbers of 45 original abstracts and $779,000 requested. TGIF is less interested in the numbers of requests and more concerned with the high quality and originality of project proposals- the 2013 submissions proved to have both.
TGIF awarded a total of $278,505 across fourteen projects, which included the funding of twenty-three paid students internships. For the first time in TGIF history, habitat restoration dominated as the project theme, with five habitat restoration projects selected. The TGIF Coordinator will also be leading grant project “Campus Tree Inventory”, another first for TGIF. With the announcement of the 2013 TGIF Spring Grant Awards, TGIF has now awarded over $1.5 million to 96 projects and funded 195 student internships in six years of grant cycles. Continue reading