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Ford Motor Company's Conservation & Environmental Grants programme has become an annual event in the Middle East. Since its inception in 2000, the GCC/Levant chapter of the Ford Grants has supported at least 150 projects with more than $1.3 million granted to date.

The programme was created to empower individuals and non-profit groups donating their time and effort to preserve the environmental well-being of their communities. By providing necessary funding and visibility, we hope to encourage the multiplication of similar grassroots efforts that will serve as catalysts for change across the globe.

Over the past decade, Ford’s green initiative has seen support and praise from various governmental and non-governmental environmental authorities including the World Wide Fund for Nature, the Emirates Wildlife Society, the Arab Forum for Environment & Development (AFED), and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO Doha).

The Ford Grants support ongoing and non-profit projects focused on Conservation Engineering, Protection of the Natural Environment and Environmental Education. For 2014, a total of US$100,000 is available for deserving initiatives.

Past projects that have benefited from the Ford Grants in the Middle East include whale and dolphin research projects in Oman, saving coral reefs in the UAE and Kuwait, growing environmental clubs in schools all around the region, cleaning up beaches in Jordan, cleaning up rivers in Lebanon, protecting mangroves in Saudi Arabia, saving Arabian Leopards in the mountains of Oman and many more.

The Middle East chapter of the Ford Grants accepts entries from ongoing and not-for-profit projects from the following countries only: Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and as of this year, Yemen. Projects that are still in the planning or proposal stages cannot be considered.

The programme is closed for 2014, with over 300 applications received from all participating countries. The independent panel of judges will convene end of October to decide on this year’s recipients. Winners will be announced mid-November 2014. For more information, please write to fmegrant@ford.com.

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