NARROWSBURG – The Upper Delaware Scenic Byway, Inc. (UDSB) is accepting proposals from groups that will help enhance its mission of promoting butterfly habitat, with grant applications accepted by the third Monday of the month.

Funding can be used for advertising, buying supplies to make pollinator plant seed balls, or other ideas that support the non-profit organization’s project, “The Monarch Butterfly: Fostering the Flyway by the Byway”. For example, a group that already has a booth at a festival could add a children’s seed ball program and distribute UDSB’s popular butterfly brochures.

“This is a perfect opportunity for organizations along the Scenic Byway to collaborate on projects that are important to both the environment and tourism-based economic development,” said UDSB Committee Chairperson Glenn Pontier.

“We want to thank the Sullivan County Legislature for supporting the valuable work we are doing to promote the river towns and the river valley,” he added.

In the last 20 years, the Monarch Butterfly population has dwindled from more than a billion to just 150 million, a nearly 82% decline that has been observed with alarm along the Delaware River, which serves as a flyway for the annual migration of Northeastern Monarchs from their summer breeding grounds to their wintering roosts in central Mexico.

UDSB, Inc. has made a pool of $5,000 available in 2019 for promotion of butterfly habitat through programs that:

·         Teach young people about Monarchs (and other butterflies) and their need for food and habitat; ·         Educate the public about pollinator and habitat gardens; ·         Advertise the presence of butterflies along the byway; or ·         Other creative ideas.

Organizations may apply for grants of up to $1,500 to meet these goals. Grants are competitive, with amounts generally in the range of up to $500 for a single project or event. Proposals that include some match (either monetary or in-kind) will receive preference.

Grants will be awarded on a rolling deadline. Applications submitted by the third Monday of a month will be reviewed for award decisions to be made on the fourth Monday.

Applicants must have a non-profit status, such as being a 501(c)3 or equivalent. Examples are churches and other religious organizations, chambers of commerce, local governments, schools, civic organizations, 4-H clubs, scouts, etc. They must also be located in the general NYS Route 97 service area, familiar with the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway, and familiar with festivals, fairs, and events within the byway.

Successful projects must consider the following guidelines:

•  Program or activity must take place along the byway or in a byway community;

•  Materials used must be non-invasive or native plants;

•  Activity or workshop must be open to everyone;

•  Activity must be clearly and distinctly marked;

•  Upper Delaware Scenic Byway must be acknowledged as contributing to the activity; and

•  If there is a small charge for participation, some provision must be made for individuals unable to pay, such as through scholarships.

Upon approval, applicants will receive an award letter stating: approval of the project; the amount of the grant award; and requirements upon completion, including a report showing how the money was spent and the number of people served.

To request a one-page application form, email info@upperdelawarescenicbyway.org. Completed applications may be returned electronically or to UDSB, P.O. Box 127, Narrowsburg, NY 12764.