Last month, the Cove Ridge Foundation received $1,000 from Keep Virginia Beautiful’s 30 in 30 Green Grants program. The grant will fund four new outdoor recycling bins, valued at $250 each, at the park.
“The park’s goal, of course, is to be environmentally conscious, so they offer recycling bins and things for park guests to recycle their plastic and aluminum,” said Beckey Watson, development director for Keep Virginia Beautiful. “But there’s a limited number of bins, and over the years, they’ve just had a lot of wear and tear on them, so their recycling efforts have been hindered.”
How are grant recipients selected?
Watson said the 30 in 30 Green Grants program began in 2011. Grants are awarded in four categories — community beautification, cigarette litter prevention, litter prevention and recycling — and are available to schools, parks, counties, towns and other groups.
Grant applications are accepted throughout the month of April, and winners are selected by a panel of judges. One winner is selected for each day in June, for a total of 30.
“We had the most number of applications this year,” Watson said. “So I’m really encouraged by the number of groups that are out there doing these projects in their communities.”
What is the goal?
The Cove Ridge Foundation, which supports Natural Tunnel State Park, hopes the project will make an impact on the park’s recycling numbers.
“They’re going to track the results, and they’re going to measure the success of the project by how much recycling is done at the park,” Watson said. “They know what they recycled last year. Yhey keep a weekly log, so they’ll look at it compared to what they collect this year after these new bins are in place. So that’s how we’ll know that the program was successful.”