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Applications now open for Neighborhood Beautification Fund grants to help Detroiters beautify their communities

2023
  • Block clubs, neighborhood associations and nonprofits can apply for their share of $2.25M in grants, ranging from $500 to $15,000.
  • Grants can be used for neighborhood clean-ups, community gardens, public space activities.
  • One-on-one office hours are available to help groups with application.

 

Mayor Mike Duggan and City Council President Mary Sheffield announced today that applications are now open for Detroiters to apply for the second annual Neighborhood Beautification Program (NBP), which awards grants that range from $500 to $15,000 to help improve communities across the city.

The NBP grants provide funding for Detroit-based neighborhood associations, block clubs, faith-based organizations and nonprofits that currently own the property where they want to carry out a project in the community. Last year saw 36 recipients awarded a total of almost $500,000 in 2022, including for projects in all seven City Council districts. The program was created to support three types of projects:

  • Clean-up activities.
  • Community gardens.
  • Public spaces/activities.

For those hoping to beautify their community but do not own the land, the NBP will assist organizations with purchasing or leasing vacant lots owned by the Detroit Land Bank Authority. Up to 50 projects a year will receive funding. This year's deadline to apply is March 17.

“Detroiters are proud of their communities and want to roll up their sleeves and beautify the streets they call home, sometimes they just need a bit of financial help to do so,” Mayor Duggan said. “These grants are a great example of how the City of Detroit is partnering with residents to help beautify their neighborhoods. This program is a key tool in helping Detroiters rebuild Detroit.”

The NBP is part of the Neighborhood Improvement Fund (NIF), which was championed by Council President Sheffield as part of the development deal for the Detroit Pistons' new headquarters and training facility in District 5. The initial funding for the program is $2.25 million, which includes $1.25 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding and $1 million in NIF funding. NIF dollars are derived from the net income tax revenue collected from NBA players' salaries during home games played at Little Caesars Arena and the salaries of Pistons and Palace Sports & Entertainment employees.

“As the creator of the Neighborhood Improvement Fund, my goal is to help fund the champions in the neighborhoods who have assisted with the upkeep and maintenance to enhance the areas that they live,” Council President Sheffield said. “I am overjoyed that the second round of applications for the Neighborhood Beautification Program is now live, and I am looking forward to seeing how the vision of our applicants transform into tangible benefits in the neighborhoods.”

The NIF has an expressed purpose of removing blight; providing new recreational opportunities and home repairs for senior citizens and disabled Detroiters; creating educational and apprenticeship opportunities for young people; and financing affordable housing developments – all with the goal of enhancing, strengthening and transforming Detroit neighborhoods outside of Midtown and downtown.

The Neighborhood Beautification Program is overseen by the City of Detroit's Housing & Revitalization Department and administered by the Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency (Wayne Metro).

“The Neighborhood Beautification Program is playing a key role in our efforts to turn blight into beauty,” said Tamra Fountaine Hardy, director of HRD's Neighborhood Services Division, which oversees the NBP. “Our first year was a tremendous success, and we know that as more people see the difference this program is making, we'll see even more Detroiters applying as we build our city back better than ever before.”

How to apply

Organizations can apply at www.waynemetro.org/neighborhood-beautification-grant . The City's Department of Neighborhoods (DON) has also been sharing information about the program during its regular DONcast meetings with communities in each council district to prepare block clubs and neighborhood associations on how to apply. A question-and-answer session to help Detroiters with the application process is set for Feb. 22, with details to be available on Wayne Metro's website.

The funds available under the NBP can be used to fuel creative ideas, spark neighborhood revitalization, or strengthen the connections between neighborhood-based groups. The City of Detroit will provide resources to allow eligible organizations and residents to become actively engaged in the health and well-being of their community and to encourage residents to get involved in making their neighborhood better.

Nonprofits and faith-based organizations must partner with a block club or neighborhood association to apply.

For more information on applying, residents can e-mail Contact Samuel Coons or Karmel Reeves at [email protected] or [email protected] . The City also has weekly Neighborhood Beautification Program office hours, where residents can join an online chat to get help. No registration is required – just click the links below.