Princeton, NJ – December 11, 2020 – Sustainable Princeton and the Municipality of Princeton announced Princeton has been awarded a combined grant totaling $55,000, funded by the Partners for Places grant funded by The Funders Network, Eve Coulson and an anonymous donor. This grant will support project partners’ work with the landscaping community to adopt practices that protect the health of both the landscapers and the environment.
Princeton is one of nine cities to receive the Partners for Places grant, which focuses largely on empowering and engaging low-income neighborhoods, embedding racial equity into local decision-making, and building partnerships between government, sustainability groups, place-based foundations, and community-led frontline groups. Sustainable Princeton, the grant recipient, will coordinate a project team that includes members from Unidad Latina en Acción NJ, Latin American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Rutgers School of Public Health, Quiet Princeton, and the municipality’s Human Services Department and Commission, Board of Health, Civil Rights Commission, and Environmental Commission.
“This grant provides an exciting opportunity to make progress on several of Princeton’s Climate Action Plan strategies,” said Christine Symington, Program Director of Sustainable Princeton. “Namely protecting the health and safety of outdoor workers from the effects of climate change, expanding low-mow or no-mow maintenance areas in town, and reducing emissions from lawn maintenance equipment.”
“The recent movement to address racial inequality and the marginalization of the underrepresented has made it clear we need to do more to include those voices in policies and programs,” said Councilwoman Eve Neidergang. “This grant will allow us to engage directly with the landscaping community to ensure that they are involved in designing solutions that will benefit them as well as our environment.”
“We are excited to partner with Sustainable Princeton and the Municipality,” said Ana Paola Pazmiño, Project Coordinator from Unidad Latina en Accion NJ. “Landscaping workers are valued members of the Princeton community. We are eager to work on this project which will create a safe space to focus on workers’ issues of health and safety.”
Within the next few months, the project partners will continue to gather feedback from the landscaping community about their businesses. Mini-grant support from a local donor has allowed Sustainable Princeton to survey local landscaping companies in preparation for this project. A series of workshops to help landscapers transition to more sustainable practices and educate owners and workers about health and safety practices will occur in the spring. An economic and health impact analysis will be produced to aid the Council if it decides to consider a policy to restrict or ban gas-powered lawn maintenance equipment. Finally, an education campaign targeted to residents will take place in the summer to help create the demand for more sustainable landscaping practices from local companies.
About Sustainable Princeton:
Founded in 2012, Sustainable Princeton is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to inspire the community to develop and implement solutions that positively impact the environment. With a vision for Princeton to be a model town that examines every action through the lens of sustainability, ensuring a healthy environment, a strong economy, and the well-being of all community members now and in the future. Sustainable Princeton strives to Lead Community Change. The organization’s office is located at 1 Monument Drive, Princeton, New Jersey. For more information, visit sustainableprinceton.org.
About Partners for Places:
Partners for Places, a joint effort by The Funders Network and the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), pairs local governments with philanthropy to support sustainability projects across the U.S. and Canada.
Partners for Places is a successful matching grant program that aims to enhance local capacity to build equitable and sustainable communities in the United States and Canada. The fund does this by requiring local government and local foundation partnerships, and by pairing national and local philanthropic funding sources. These one-to-one matching awards support the planning and implementing of urban sustainability and green stormwater infrastructure projects. National funders invest in local projects to promote a healthy environment, a strong economy, and well-being of all residents. Through these projects, Partners for Places fosters long-term relationships that make our communities more prosperous, livable, and vibrant.
The grant program provides partnership investments between $25,000 and $75,000 for one-year projects, or between $50,000 and $100,000 for two-year projects, with a 1:1 match required by one or more local foundations.
To date, Partners for Places has awarded more than $7.5 million across North America in this successful matching grant program, leading to more than $16 million in investments.