For a time, the Foundation for Pennsylvania Watersheds (FPW) was a donor-advised fund at the Community Foundation, supported primarily by The Heinz Endowments and the Richard King Mellon Foundation. Because of its growth, FPW incorporated in 2007 as a supporting organization of the Community Foundation. A supporting organization is a type of subsidiary of organizations that work closely together.
Beginning in its original form in 1994, FPW has worked to improve water quality throughout Pennsylvania. FPW supports local, environmental groups interested in making their communities cleaner, safer, and healthier for future generations.
FPW does this through small grants that leverage local, state, and federal funding. To date, FPW has invested $10.1 million to leverage more than $144.2 million. This investment has resulted in improved water quality of 869 mine drainage-impacted stream miles.
According to Executive Director John Dawes, “We’ve assisted with planting more than 277,000 linear feet of stream-side vegetation. Additionally, our efforts have assisted with restoring 61,000 linear feet of stream habitat; improving fishing, boating, and swimming opportunities. As an environmental leader, FPW has worked nationally to ensure funding for mine reclamation continues.
“Our work resulted in $1.4B to address Pennsylvania’s mining legacy of more than 185,000 acres of unsafe, mine-scarred lands and 5,500 miles of streams devoid of life. Most recently, FPW was the beneficiary of an environmental settlement for a local power plant’s pollution violations. The settlement will provide $3.5M to assist in continuing our work to reduce industry’s impact on our natural resources and water quality. Our work ensures that future generations have enough clean water, and that children and families have places to enjoy nature.”