School Garden Support Grant Opportunity

Openlands is offering schools in our network, the opportunity to apply for a grant to support their existing school garden. We want to assist schools keeping their gardens activated to be living laboratories for students, and a space for the school to connect with their surrounding community. Schools that are chosen will receive in-person support and supplies of their choosing, worth up to $1000. Schools that are chosen to receive the Openlands Garden Support Grant will receive the following:

  • Openlands will purchase and drop off up to $1000 of supplies to support the school garden, which can be used for:
    • Plants
    • Seeds
    • Tools 
    • Soil and soil amendments
    • Replacing old benches 
    • Replacing beds
    • Supplies for an art project in the garden
  • Support with Garden Team check-ins
  • Support with garnering community support of the garden, by asset mapping and connecting with community organizations
  • If it’s determined to be safe, Openlands will help to facilitate up to 4 garden sessions with students, parents, and/or community members between June 1, 2021-November 6, 2021.
  • A scholarship for someone from your team to attend the Openlands TreeKeepers Course.


Your school must be one of the schools that Openlands has supported through the Building School Gardens program or Space to Grow. You can view the list of schools in our network here.

Application Process:

  1. Fill out our grant form application by April 30, 2021.
  2. We will notify you of your status on May 31.
  3. If you are selected, Openlands will purchase your requested supplies and coordinate delivery to your school this spring.

The Application is now closed. Please stay tuned for the grant award announcement!

Climate change is here. Nature-based solutions can help.

Openlands works across the Chicago metropolitan region to advance nature-based solutions to climate change, improve the health and well-being of communities, and create a more verdant region for all. Learn more about our work and how you can get involved to help make a more verdant, equitable region with Openlands.

Get Involved with Openlands

There are many ways to help protect the nature you love with Openlands. Whether you’re a teacher that wants to teach outside, a government agency that wants to improve your green space or a tree lover who wants to volunteer in their community, there are opportunities to connect with nature where you live.

Volunteering and Events

There are numerous ways to participate and give back to nature around the region!

Land + Water Restoration:

Openlands partners in Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge to restore land recently acquired with McHenry County Conservation District and Friends of Hackmatack.

Openlands Education Events:

Stay tuned for upcoming events!

Openlands Forestry Events + Volunteer Opportunities: