Michigan Volunteer River, Stream and Creek Cleanup Program

The Michigan Volunteer River, Stream, and Creek Cleanup Grant Program (VRSCCP) provides small grants to local units of government to help implement volunteer cleanup efforts of rivers, streams, and creeks to improve the waters in Michigan. Funding for this program is provided by the Michigan DEQ through fees collected from the sale of Michigan’s Water Quality Protection License Plates. The GLC assists the Michigan DEQ in publicizing and administering the program.
Since 2005, 172 grants totaling more than $343,000 have been awarded to recipients around the state of Michigan under the VRSCCP. During the 2016 grant cycle, 16 cleanup projects were awarded grants totaling $32,252 in project funds.

Project Narrative

The Michigan Volunteer River, Stream, and Creek Cleanup Grant Program (VRSCCP) is a competitive grants program that provides small grants to local units of government to help implement volunteer cleanup efforts of rivers, streams, and creeks to improve the waters in Michigan. Grants typically range from $500 to $5,000, and may be used to support the cleanup and removal of human-made trash and debris from rivers and streams and along their banks. Grant funds awarded under the program can pay for such items as disposal costs, hand tools, supplies, refreshments, and other volunteer appreciation materials for volunteers. Local units of government are eligible to apply for and receive funding and may, in turn, work with nonprofit organizations and grassroots groups to conduct the actual cleanup efforts.

The VRSCCP is managed by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and is administered under contract by the Great Lakes Commission (GLC). The DEQ works cooperatively with the GLC staff, providing overall direction for the program and the awarding of grant funds. Additionally, DEQ staff provides advice and assistance to volunteers on technical issues and considerations for the proposed projects.

The Friends of the Shiawassee River, in partnership with the Shiawassee County Health Department (a 2014 VRSCCP grant recipient) and others, produced a video of their annual Shiawassee River cleanup in 2014. We thank them for sharing this video with us and hope that it may inspire others to take the steps to plan and host similar volunteer cleanup events in communities around our state. Please enjoy!

Photo credit: Header: ©flickr/heckbr

Project Partners

Funding

Each year, approximately $25,000 is made available to VRSCCP grant recipients, with funding provided by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) through fees collected from the sale of Michigan’s Water Quality Protection License Plates under Public Act 74 of 2000. By law, these funds are to be used for water quality protection in Michigan Great Lakes, inland lakes, rivers, and streams.

For More Information

Laura Kaminski
Grants and Contracts Manager
Great Lakes Commission
734-971-9135
laurak@glc.org

Marcy Knoll Wilmes
Senior Aquatic Biologist
Michigan DEQ
517-284-5544
KnollM@michigan.gov

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