RAE Launches Inclusive Coasts Workshops to Enhance DEIJ in Coastal Conservation Grantmaking, Project Implementation 

Thanks to support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), Restore America’s Estuaries (RAE) is pleased to announce the launch of two workshop series designed to assist coastal conservation organizations in recognizing and overcoming barriers related to issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice (DEIJ) in grantmaking and project implementation. These workshops are part of RAE’s larger Inclusive Coasts Initiative

Marginalized communities are often underrepresented in environmental management and decision making, yet at the same time are disproportionately vulnerable to the effects of pollution, climate change, and unsustainable development said Daniel Hayden, President and CEO of Restore America’s Estuaries. Whether facilitating access to grant programs or engaging local stakeholders in coastal restoration projects, an emphasis on DEIJ is critical for maximizing positive, mutually beneficial outcomes.  

In RAE’s work as grant facilitator, stakeholder convener, and project implementer, it has become acutely aware of the benefit of DEIJ-focused approaches to these processes. Likewise, other organizations in the coastal conservation community have expressed the urgent need for a greater DEIJ emphasis in grantmaking and project implementation.  

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RAE is excited to organize this effort and is confident that support from NSF will enhance essential work already being done in this field. The award will be used to host a series of workshops with two separate tracks: one for grantmakers and one for project implementers. We expect these events to begin in the Fall of 2021. 

Experts in DEIJ will design custom curricula for the workshops. Objectives, content, and materials of the workshops will also be informed by a working group consisting of diverse representatives and stakeholders within the coastal conservation community.  

RAE hopes these workshops will result in agreed upon norms in grantmaking, contributing to improved access to grant funding as well as more inclusive project implementation. The ultimate objective for this work continues to be achieving a just distribution of coastal restoration resources and benefits to all communities. 

If you are interested in becoming a member of the working group or would like more information on further funding this important work, please email Lance Speidell.