Stories from the Grassroots: The Greengrants Blog

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    First Solar partners with Global Greengrants for clean water and energy

    Apr 30, 2015 | One Comment

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                

    Announcing a unique clean energy and water partnership
    Global Greengrants and First Solar give grants to community-led environmental projects

    (BOULDER, Colo) – April 22, 2015 – In honor of Earth Day, Global Greengrants Fund announces its partnership with First Solar Corporate Charitable Fund of the Toledo Community Foundation to cultivate community projects that address environmental education, innovative technologies, clean energy, and clean water in sub-Saharan Africa, Central America, Chile, and Brazil.

    “Communities across the globe are trying to protect the environment and safeguard their rights. But they face increasing challenges—many of which they had no part in creating—such as rising temperatures, drought, food insecurity, water contamination, and environmental degradation caused by extractive industries,” said Terry Odendahl, executive director and CEO of Global Greengrants Fund. “Supporters like First Solar help us channel crucial funding to people in communities, empowering local leaders to make decisions, take action, and create sustainable change.”

    The following two projects are examples of work supported through this unique partnership:

    Mali: Keeping Plastic Out of the Fire
    In many countries, people burn trash as fuel. Firewood prices are particularly high in Mali, so Malinese people often burn plastic bags. This leads to respiratory problems and contributes greenhouse gas emissions that exacerbate the global climate crisis. With a $4,000 Greengrant, the Women Warriors of the 501 Housing Association is conducting a campaign to raise awareness about climate change and the health risks of burning plastic bags. The group will also help women sell plastic bags to rubber-processing factories to generate additional income for their families. More than 1,600 people will benefit.

    Burkina Faso: Promoting Renewable Energy Solutions
    The Association Lagme Yensgo is working to empower local citizens in Burkina Faso as they face climate change and other environmental threats. The group conducts outreach in rural communities to educate residents about climate change, environmental degradation, and the impacts on human lives. The group also collaborates with other organizations in Burkina Faso to promote energy sources that have minimal carbon footprints, such as biogas.

    Of the First Solar Corporate Charitable Fund’s $50,000 grant to Global Greengrants, $35,000 will be spent directly in grants to grassroots projects. To learn about Global Greengrants flagship Green Grantmaking program, visit


    ABOUT GLOBAL GREENGRANTS FUND: Global Greengrants Fund is the leading environmental fund that supports grassroots action on a global scale. Global Greengrants funds local groups to protect the environment, restore places and ways of life that have been harmed, and transform systems for a sustainable future. It gives targeted grants through a network of on-the-ground advisors with direct knowledge of local environmental and social justice issues. Since 1993, Global Greengrants has provided over 8,500 grants worth more than $45 million in 163 countries. Learn more at

    ABOUT THE FIRST SOLAR CORPORATE CHARITABLE FUND: The First Solar Corporate Charitable Fund seeks to improve the quality of life in communities around the world. The Fund seeks to support projects and services through the donation of solar modules and systems. In addition to requests for donation of modules, applications may include a request for grant funds to support the project. Learn more at


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      7 groups in Nepal to support with earthquake relief donations

      Apr 29, 2015 | No Comments

      It is with profound sadness that the Global Greengrants Fund family has watched the destruction in Nepal following the most powerful earthquake to hit the country in 80 years. Our hearts go out to our grantees, friends, colleagues, and allies… Read more

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        Berta Cáceres wins the 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize

        Apr 22, 2015 | No Comments

        We are thrilled to congratulate Global Greengrants grantee Berta Cáceres on winning the 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize. She and the five other grassroots environmental leaders accepted the prize this week for their brave dedication to protecting vulnerable people and ecosystems.… Read more

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          Living Aveda: an Indian excursion for clean water

          Apr 14, 2015 | No Comments

          Two girls fetch water for their families on the hilly road outside of Rishikesh.Photo: Kim Roberson Last year, Kim Jessen Roberson, Global Greengrants’ Director of Philanthropy traveled with 13 Aveda stylists, salon owners, and spa therapists to the foothills of… Read more

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            Aftermath of Cyclone Pam: report from Vanuatu

            Mar 31, 2015 | No Comments

            Cyclone Pam hit Vanuatu three weeks ago…and destroyed entire villages on the island of Erromango. About 10,000 people live on Erromango, the third largest island in Vanuatu. Because it is so sparsely populated, it is not high on the radar… Read more

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              My women and climate “aha” moment

              Mar 23, 2015 | One Comment

              By Trish Tierney, a member of the Global Giving Network steering committee A few weeks ago, a friend sent me a link to a Fast Company article titled “The Unique Challenges of Being a Middle-Aged Woman Entrepreneur.” It took me… Read more

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                We can’t hold back the sea: a woman’s story of climate survival

                Mar 17, 2015 | No Comments

                Ursula Rakova's island is disappearing into the sea. How will her community survive in the face of climate change? This is their story. Read more

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                  Restoring fresh water and people’s health in Micronesia

                  Jan 28, 2015 | No Comments

                  Photo: Stefan Krasowski / CC BY 2.0 A thick blanket of rainforest covers the Micronesian island of Pohnpei. Waterfalls pour over black basalt mountains. Though rivers seem plentiful, waterborne diseases have plagued people in the village of Kepirohi in southern… Read more

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                    A victory for Miskito stewards of the forest

                    Jan 16, 2015 | No Comments

                    The indigenous Miskito people live amongst lush rainforests along the Caribbean Coast in Honduras. After a 40-year struggle, they won title to their ancestral land in 2013. Read more

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                      Shell oil to pay $84M for pollution in the Niger Delta

                      Jan 8, 2015 | No Comments

                      Shell has agreed to pay $84 million for two oil spills in the Niger Delta community of Bodo. A step in the right direction or a paltry sum in comparison with the devastation big oil is wreaking? It's both. Read more