2015 Grants Listed Alphabetically by Organization

Prior to 2015, High Meadows indicated what we learned from each grant by editing previous years’ grant descriptions using information from grant reports. As of 2015, we no longer do this. For more information about what we have learned, please see our Learning Resources page. 

CENTER FOR AN AGRICULTURAL ECONOMY | 2015 | Agriculture | $40,000
This grant supports a third year of developing market and production capacity to serve institutions with locally produced, lightly processed vegetables. CAE’s Vermont Food Venture Center intends to  design and test vegetable processing techniques and seek feedback from customers; identify distribution channels and farmers to supply produce; and target new markets to increase sales. CAE has analyzed their systems in order to process vegetables at a price point good for buyers, processors, and sellers and helped farmers understand what vegetables are best for institutional markets. This grant was made as part of VCF’s Food and Farm Initiative.

CHAMPLAIN VALLEY FARMER COALITION (Fiscal Sponsor: UVM Extension) | 2015-2017 | Agriculture, Land Use | $80,200 over 3 years
This is the first year of a three year grant to support staffing for on-farm, farmer-to-farmer outreach and education. High Meadows supports this work because farm practices that reduce erosion and runoff support both watershed resilience and farm viability goals. The Champlain Valley Farmers Coalition was involved in development of Vermont’s Clean Water Act, and they will support farmers with information and technical assistance as the Act is implemented.

COMMUNITY RESILIENCE ORGANIZATIONS (CRO) | 2014-2016 | Land Use | $45,000 over 3 years
CRO convenes elected officials, emergency response personnel, town planners, and concerned citizens in Vermont towns to update their hazard mitigation plans and build resilience on a town scale. The goal is to engage new participants in this work and bring together individuals who don’t typically work together or even know each other.

COMPOSTING ASSOCIATION OF VERMONT | 2015 | Agriculture, Land Use | $17,410
CAV believes that soil health is the “lynchpin” uniting clean water, organics diversion, stormwater management, and climate change adaptation. CAV’s 2015 work has two components: 1) Training “Community Educators” to provide information and technical support to households and businesses regarding Act 148 (Vermont’s Universal Recycling and Composting Law); and 2) Engaging in state policymaking in order to integrate healthy soil policy in land use and stormwater management guidelines.

CONNECTICUT RIVER WATERSHED COUNCIL | 2015-2017 | Land Use | $88,000 over 3 years
The Connecticut River Watershed Council (CRWC) collaborates with the Conservation Law Foundation and Lake Champlain International to advance climate adaptation and resilience in Vermont. CRWC intends to work with landowners in the Connecticut River watershed to help them reduce runoff and erosion on their properties and monitor nutrient pollution in the Connecticut River watershed. They also plan to petition the EPA to update the Long Island Sound TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load, a pollution budget for water quality standards) to consider the effects of climate change.

CONSERVATION LAW FOUNDATION | 2015-2017 | Land Use | $90,000 over 3 years
The Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) intends to collaborate with the Connecticut River Watershed Council and Lake Champlain International to advance climate adaptation and resilience in Vermont. CLF plans to engage in fully implementing the Clean Water Act and issuing a strong Vermont stormwater manual which prioritizes green infrastructure. They plan to advocate for investment in resilient water and wastewater infrastructure in Vermont.

COVER HOME REPAIR | 2015-2016 | Energy | $49,000 over 2 years
This grant supports COVER Home Repair’s weatherization program. COVER’s mission is to foster hope and build community in the Upper Valley by bringing together volunteers and homeowners to complete urgently needed home repair and weatherization projects. Annually, COVER’s weatherization work has reduced carbon emissions by 181 metric tons and saved homeowners $50,065.

ENERGY ACTION NETWORK | 2015-2016 | Energy | $30,000 over 2 years
EAN’s capital mobilization work plans to identify effective public and private investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy throughout Vermont. This work is in collaboration with the Coalition for Green Capital, and it supports Vermont’s goal of 90% renewable energy by 2050.

HEALTHCARE WITHOUT HARM | 2015 | Agriculture | $40,000
Health Care Without Harm is a national organization working to “develop and implement ecologically sound and healthy alternatives to current health care practices that pollute the environment and contribute to disease.” They aim to increase the purchase of healthy local food by Vermont medical facilities by supporting tracking, aggregating data on the amount of local food purchased, working with distributors, and helping hospitals access funds to promote local food purchases for better community well-being.

HOUSING VERMONT | 2015 | Energy | $15,000
Housing Vermont aims to complete its Minimum Viable Product (MVP) platform (supported by an earlier HMF grant) by installing and testing its performance at 20 properties. The MVP software program remotely tracks energy consumption at affordable housing sites, and can monitor electricity and fuel consumption as well as solar output. It also allows real-time comparisons of both a single building’s performance to expected efficiency savings and to other similarly constructed buildings, allowing them to assess the true impact of energy efficiency improvements. If successful, this platform could be used in for-profit rental units, schools, and/ or other public buildings.

IDLE-FREE VERMONT | 2015 | Energy | $13,500
This grant continues Idle-Free’s educational outreach about the environmental and health implications of vehicle idling supported in an earlier 2014 grant. This second grant also hopes to assess whether improved idling habits last beyond a student’s involvement in the program.

This grant supports ISC’s work to establish and coordinate the Resilient Vermont network. The network plans to coordinate implementation of ISC’s Roadmap to Resilience report, bringing together government agencies, non-profits, and community organizations to proactively adapt to a changing climate.  

INTERVALE CENTER | 2015-2017 | Agriculture, Land Use | $150,000 over 3 years
Three years of core operating support. The Intervale’s work has been integral to strengthening community food systems by enhancing farm viability, promoting sustainable use and stewardship of agricultural lands, and ensuring community engagement in the food system. In 2015, the Intervale plans to continue to work to improve farm viability, develop or grow markets for local food, install riparian buffer and water quality improvements, expand local food access among Vermonters of all incomes, invest in maintaining their land and buildings, and build resilience (see next grant).  

INTERVALE CENTER | 2015 | Land Use, Agriculture | $17,400
The Intervale Center’s rich agricultural land stems, in part, from its location in the floodplain of the Winooski River. In 2014, with High Meadows’ support, the Intervale completed a land use assessment and developed a climate adaptation plan. This second grant supports initial implementation and real-life testing of the plan: Planting perennials like elderberries and aronia, coppiced maple production, solar installation, cover cropping, berm building, biochar research, and invasive species management. The Intervale’s technical assistance programs plan to share their learning with farms throughout Vermont.

LAKE CHAMPLAIN INTERNATIONAL | 2015-2017 | Land Use | $65,000 over 3 years
Lake Champlain International plans to collaborate with the Connecticut River Watershed Council and Conservation Law Foundation to advance climate adaptation and resilience in Vermont. They aim for full implementation of the Clean Water Act and a strong Vermont stormwater manual. They intend to build public support for rules and practices that improve resilience and mitigate damage to water quality through a statewide public education campaign, community presentations, and alerting the public about pollution in the Lake Champlain watershed.

LOCAL MOTION | 2015 | Energy, Land Use | $15,000
Local Motion plans to support two Northeast Kingdom towns to improve their local bike-walk infrastructure. Transportation is the largest source of GHG emissions in Vermont (45% of 2012 emissions). Local Motion believes that mobilizing grassroots citizen support for bike and pedestrian infrastructure can be a catalyst for reducing single occupancy vehicle driving and related GHG emissions.

MANUFACTURED HOUSING INNOVATION PROJECT (High Performance Homes) | 2015-2016 | Energy | $187,000 to VHCB over two years; $50,000 financing guarantee to VERMONT ENERGY INVESTMENT CORPORATION
HMF has been involved in the high performance mobile home project since its inception. 2015 - 2016 work includes marketing high performance homes, project support for two high performance cottage homes, continued engineering modifications, and guidance to prospective home buyers. The financing guarantee seeks to enable more low-cost financing for low- and moderate-income potential homeowners.

NORTHERN FOREST CENTER | 2013-2015 | Energy, Land Use | $80,000 over 3 years
Based on a successful New Hampshire pilot, this grant supports development and project management of the Vermont Model Neighborhood Project, a program to install central wood pellet heating systems in residential, small commercial, and municipal buildings in the Northeast Kingdom. NFC aims to grow the market for efficient wood energy in the Northeast Kingdom as a source of heat that keeps a greater share of energy dollars circulating in the local economy.

NORTHSHIRE GROWS! (Fiscal sponsor: RAFFL) | 2015 | Agriculture | $6,000
Northshire Grows! (NG!) plans to continue their North Bennington area food systems leadership. RAFFL and NG! work closely, and they intend to clarify their partnership and develop the right organizational strategy for southwestern Vermont. NG! plans to work with local schools on sustainability education, supporting local food purchases, to mobilize Northshire residents around food and climate change, and to facilitate conversations about agricultural land use.

NORTHWEST HEALTHY ROOTS COLLABORATIVE (Fiscal sponsor: Northwestern Medical Center) | 2015 | Agriculture | $5,000
This grant will support the Northwest Healthy Roots Collaborative’s use of their community cold storage and refrigerated cargo truck to access institutional and wholesale markets in Franklin County. They will also continue to support the Fairfield Farmers Market Online and their Farm to School engagement to increase local purchasing by schools. This grant was made as part of VCF’s Food and Farm Initiative.

RUTLAND AREA FARM & FOOD LINK | 2015-2016 | Agriculture | $50,000 over 2 years
This grant of operating support will allow RAFFL to continue to support farmers, manage an online market and locally grown guide, and provide public education in support of local growers. RAFFL partners with local economic development agencies and regional planning commissions as they work to grow the market for local food in Rutland County.

High Meadows provided operating support to SERG’s sustainable energy programs in the Upper Valley and supported its merging with Vital Communities’ Energy Program.

This grant provides operating support to the Community Accreditation for Produce Safety (CAPS) program, which is a Vermont-based program to certify the produce handling methods of small farms. (Most small farms are exempted from new federal food safety regulations.) CAPS is governed by an advisory board of farmers in the Vermont Vegetable and Berry Growers Association, the VT Department of Health, Black River Produce, and the VT Agency of Agriculture Food and Markets. Goals include 75 farms earning CAPS accreditation in 2016 and 150 farms earning accreditation by the end of 2017.

VERMONTIVATE! (Fiscal Sponsor: VEIC) | 2015 | Energy | $15,000
Vermontivate! is an online game which motivates players to take action in the face of climate change through challenges related to energy, local food, transportation, and team-building.

VERMONT COUNCIL ON RURAL DEVELOPMENT | 2015 | Land Use, Energy |$30,000
This grant supports VCRD’s convening a Climate Change Economy Council. VCRD will convene two statewide summits, monthly meetings of a climate economy council, and develop and release a suite of recommendations. The goal is to establish Vermont as a welcome home for entrepreneurs who build businesses that mitigate the effects of climate change.

This grant will support VHCB’s technical assistance, needs assessments, and trainings for food hubs. The award was made as part of VCF’s Food and Farm Initiative.

VERMONT LAND TRUST | 2014-2016 | Land Use, Agriculture | $150,000 over 3 years
Since 2005, High Meadows has provided operating support to the Vermont Land Trust (VLT) in recognition of its leadership in conserving farmland and connecting new farmers with conserved farm properties. VLT stewards conserved lands and has been working to adapt stewardship policies to recognize evolving land uses on conserved land.

VERMONT NATURAL RESOURCES COUNCIL | 2015-2017 | Land Use | $150,000 over 3 years
VNRC builds climate resilience through state and local policy advocacy, research, and implementation. HMF values VNRC’s expertise in water, forests, energy, and land use, and we learn from their leadership on issues like the implementation of Vermont’s Clean Water Act, Act 250 challenges, and forest fragmentation.

VERMONT SUSTAINABLE JOBS FUND | 2015 | Agriculture | $20,000
In collaboration with Farm to Plate partners, VSJF will be conducting an independent grocers study via onsite interviews and assessments to better understand barriers and develop the targeted technical assistance necessary for these grocers to increase their local food purchases.

VERMONT YOUTH CONSERVATION CORPS | 2015-2016 | Land Use | $70,000 over 2 years
This two-year grant will support VYCC’s flood erosion and mitigation work on Class-4 roads in Lamoille and Washington Counties. The work will involve VYCC’s youth programs by training young people in climate change adaptation work, and will illustrate whether road improvements do in fact build resilience in major weather events.

WATERSHED RESILIENCE PLANNING GRANTS | 2015-2016 | Land Use | $249,000 to 6 watersheds across VT
These 18 month grants were awarded to six Vermont watersheds: Lamoille, Mad River, Mill Brook, Saxtons River, South Lake (aka Flower Brook), and Upper White River. Through this initiative, HMF seeks to encourage multiple communities to work together to change land use in ways that protect people, farms, homes, roads, and water quality, not just in their own town, but also upstream and downstream. Our goal is that these grants will increase the number of resilience-oriented land use projects and highlight the importance of working, thinking, and planning as a watershed. For more information about this initiative, see this page.


Click here for a list of grants made in 2016.

Click here for a list of grants made in 2014.

Click here for a list of grants made in 2013.

Click here for a list of grants made in 2012.