Coastal Community Foundation launches Healthy Harbors Fund to benefit water quality in greater Charleston area

The Healthy Harbors Fund will support healthy waterways throughout the greater Charleston areaCharleston Waterkeeper and the South Carolina Coastal Conservation League have partnered with Coastal Community Foundation to launch the Healthy Harbors Fund to support organizations and projects in Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties focused on improving water quality in the Charleston Harbor and the surrounding environment.

Earlier this year, Charleston Waterkeeper and the Coastal Conservation League received a $1 million settlement from a lawsuit filed against Frontier Logistics involving plastic pellets that washed up on Sullivan’s Island in 2019. With the settlement, which will be paid out over the next four years, the two environmental organizations established the Healthy Harbors Fund at CCF.

Grants awarded from the fund will support nonprofit organizations that primarily focus on water quality related to pollution and environmental changes in the greater Charleston area. This focus may include pollution action, academic research, data collection, education, litigation, and more.

“We know that pollution and environmental changes have a drastic effect on water quality in the Charleston area,” said Edie Blakeslee, Vice President of Grantmaking and Community Leadership at Coastal Community Foundation. “The work we aim to support with the Healthy Harbors Fund will provide much-needed data, education and advocacy around environmental concerns in the Lowcountry. We are grateful that both Charleston Waterkeeper and the Coastal Conservation League committed the resources to make this happen.”

“When it comes to water quality, what we don’t know can hurt us,” said Andrew Wunderley, Executive Director at Charleston Waterkeeper. “This investment in clean water will help identify and prevent the sources of pollution that threaten our health and the health of our waterways.”

“We are honored to help establish the Healthy Harbors Fund, which will enable local organizations to work together to find creative solutions that support a healthy Charleston Harbor by addressing some of the most pressing environmental challenges of our time,” said Laura Cantral, Executive Director of the South Carolina Coastal Conservation League.

Organizations eligible for this opportunity are 501(c)(3) nonprofits in Berkeley, Charleston and/or Dorchester counties whose projects primarily benefit the Charleston Harbor area and surrounding communities. Priority will be given to organizations with small to mid-sized operational budgets of $1,00,000 or less and activities that are reflective of and involve the community served. CCF is now accepting applications, with a deadline of 5 p.m. January 15. Organizations interested in applying should visit coastalcommunityfoundation.org/grantee-login to begin the online process.

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