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Rifle River Prosperity Network - Mini Grant Program
Deadline November 23, Workshop Tomorrow!

The Rifle River Prosperity Network is excited to announce a brand new Mini-Grants opportunity for the communities of the Rifle River Watershed. With financial support and commitment from the Saginaw Bay Watershed Initiative Network (WIN), a total of $15,000 is available for projects that:

  • Preserve and protect the forests, waters and wildlife of the Rifle River Watershed
  • Encourage community engagement in conservation stewardship and building vibrant communities
  • Support economic development opportunities showcasing the Rifle River Watershed’s rich outdoor experiences

The Rifle River Prosperity Network is made up of natural resource conservation professionals and economic development leaders from the communities of Ogemaw and Arenac counties, who have come together to intentionally connect economic investment and conservation stewardship. Our goal is to create a strong future for the Rifle River region’s special people, places and way of life.


Applications for this opportunity should demonstrate projects that:

  • Develop and promote the Rifle River region’s natural features as community assets to be enjoyed, protected and shared with others
  • Engage multiple community stakeholders in the development and completion of the project

Grant awards will range from $2,000-$7,500 and the deadline to submit applications is November 23, 2016

IMPORTANT!  A Grant Writing workshop that more fully explains the program is being held tomorrow, November 1, at the Quality Inn in West Branch beginning at 1pm.


New Research at Shiawassee Shows Invasive Plants Can Feed Farms, Power Homes

Researchers who work in wetlands in Michigan are taking a new approach to invasive plants. Instead of removing plants like phragmites and switchgrass, they’re harvesting them. While these plants are a threat to biodiversity, they might be able to benefit farmers and even power homes.

Thanks to a WIN grant, scientists are working at Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge this fall to determine if harvesting cattails from the marsh can improve habitat as well as remove nutrients that have been taken up from the soil. Scientists will be looking at this well as looking at the feasibility of using the harvested biomass as supplemental fertilizer and/or as an energy source. This is a system that could potentially be used for other invasive species such as phragmites. Learn more here from Interlochen Public Radio.

Shia Corden


Wildlife Refuge Could Play Role in Revitalizing Struggling Urban Area

Speaking of the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation has released the second in their series of videos focusing on this remarkable feature of our watershed.  The federally owned facility is considered an urban refuge because it borders the city of Saginaw.  These days, the 9,800-acre refuge - which is a haven for wildlife, particularly migratory birds - is being touted as a regional asset that could help revitalize Saginaw''s post-industrial economy. Click here to read the article and view the video. 
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Covering nearly 8,700 square miles, the Saginaw Bay Watershed is Michigan’s largest and is home to 1.4 million people. All or part of 22 Michigan counties contribute to the watershed’s 7,000 miles of rivers and streams, which contain more than 90 species of fish. In addition to supplying habitat for wildlife, residents rely on the watershed for recreation, irrigation, electrical power generation, industrial processes, and drinking water. Coordinated by The Conservation FundSaginaw Bay WIN was created to enhance the quality of life in this region by providing technical support and grant funding to projects that support the environment, the economy, and our communities.

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The Conservation Fund
P.O. Box 734
Bay City, Michigan 48707

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