United States Botanic Garden and American Public Gardens Association

 
Urban Agriculture Resilience Program Q&A

 

The USBG and Association held a Q&A webinar on May 4, 2021. This webinar is available as a recording and is can be viewed here. The slides for the presentation can be viewed here

If you have any additional questions, that are not answered here, please email info@publicgardens.org 

 

General 

Q: What are the most important priorities you are looking to fund for the 2021 awards? 

A: Priority will be given to programs who demonstrate our priorities for 2021 awards which are outlined on the first page of the criteria document.

Q: Is there a list of 2020 grant recipients? 

A: Yes, you can find the full list of the 2020 recipients here

Q: When is the end date for the award? Is it the same as the report date of Feb. 1, 2022? 

A: Yes, everything should be wrapped up by 2/1/2022. 

 

Eligibility 

Q: Can our organization apply this year if we applied or received last year’s award? 

A: Yes, anyone who applied or was awarded in 2020 is welcome to apply for a 2021 award. There are new criteria for this year’s awards. We recommend reviewing the criteria to determine your program’s eligibility. 

Q: Is my organization eligible to apply for an award? 

A: While we are not giving individual application advice, all eligibility requirements are included in this criteria document

Q: What is your definition of what is (or is not) a public garden? 

A: Our definition of a public garden can be found here

Q: Can I apply if my organization is not a public garden?

A: All applications require a partnership between at least two entities, one of which must be a public garden. If your organization does not meet the definition of public garden, you can still apply to the program if one of your partner organizations does meet the definition of public garden. Additionally, the primary awardee organization must be either a U.S. public garden or an incorporated nonprofit organization with an Employer Identification Number recognized by the IRS capable of generating a W-9 Form to receive payment.

Q: Does the applicant need to be located in the United States? 

A: Applicants do have to be a U.S. based garden or organization. 

Q: Under the section on partner organizations, it lists "other qualified organizations" does this include faith-based organizations? 

A: Yes, faith-based organizations can qualify as a partner. 

Q: Can the partner be another entity (eg. student food pantry) within the University if you are a university-affiliated botanic garden? 

A: Yes, if there are at least two separate partner entities that have two different leaders signing the partnership agreement (eg.letter of intent, MOA, MOU) this fulfils the partner requirement. 

 

Application 

Q: Is there a way to easily view the application questions outside of the online form? 

A: Yes, after receiving many requests to have a PDF version of the application we have posted a preview of the application here

Q: Do you think it enhances the application to include more than 1 garden as a partner organization? Or might that seem to lack focus and specificity? 

A: You can certainly apply with more than one garden as a partner. Many partnerships may also have more than two partners. Ideally, the assets of both or all partners would be creatively utilized or leveraged. 

Q: Does receiving the award last year make you more or less competitive for this year? 

A: No, this will not hold weight in the decision-making process. Note that we do have different criteria for this year's awards. 

Q: Is food security the only issue to be addressed, or do you also accept outcomes like mental health, building community ect? 

A: Other outcomes can be included as well alongside addressing food security. Ideally programs will focus on audiences that are experiencing food insecurity and those audiences are benefiting from the program in some way. Programs also would integrate education and food growing together. 

Q: Can you give us an idea on the review criteria, if there is a section(s) that are weighted more? How much is the budget taken in consideration when reviewing? 

A: The most important things we will be considering for incoming applications are all listed in the criteria document. How you budget to use funds, outside of the specified restrictions, doesn’t play a role in the decision. 

 

Education 

Q: Are there specific criteria to meet the education requirement? Are there specific formats of educational programming that are allowed/not allowed. 

A: We are open to a wide range of education formats and methods. There are not any specific criteria to meet this requirement but reviewing our priories for 2021 awards, on the first page of the criteria document, may be helpful to you. 

Q: Is it important that the audience experiencing food insecurity is receiving food and education? For example, our education programs do not reach the same audience that our food reaches. 

A: We understand that programs may reach multiple audiences. The important thing is that both pieces, the educational and the food growing, are integrated in some way and not separate. They could reach different audiences. 

Q: Do social media posts, videos on YouTube count as education or do we need in-person or live/synchronous online programs to qualify? 

A: This can vary depending on the content you plan to post. Social media posts that announce your program and do not involve your audience would not be considered educational. Something like a YouTube educational class/livestream or Facebook live educational event can qualify. 

 

Funding and Budgeting 

Q: Are there restrictions for how the funds can be used?

A: There are a few restrictions, they are all listed in the budget form document.

Q: The majority (if not all) of our partner org expenses toward the project will be in-kind, should they still be included in the project budget? 

A: We are not asking for cost sharing for this award. The award is a direct award. This is something you can point out in the narrative of your application but is not needed for your budget. In the budget we are asking to see how the money from the award is distributed and it’s use for each organization in the partnership. 

Q: Can stipends for volunteers be included in budget? 

A: Volunteers can’t be paid. Other salary costs, such as staff time to manage volunteers can be included as a part of the budget. 

Q: Is it okay if the total award only goes to one partner? 

A: Yes, if this is how the partnership is set up, that is fine. 

Q: Can we include an intern stipend? 

A: The award can be used to pay staff including interns. 

 

Reporting 

Q: Will the reporting requirements be listed on the website? 

A: We plan to send the reporting requirements directly to awardees after they are notified that they have been awarded. This will happen very early on to let awardees know exactly what things they may need to track or monitor throughout their program participation. 

 

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