Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) and Western Mining Action Network (WMAN) 2018-19 Grassroots Communities Mining Mini-Grant Program

The IEN/WMAN Mining Mini-Grants Program offers financial grant assistance to communities threatened or adversely affected by mining in the U.S. and Canada.

This year, we will fund approximately 70 grantees at $3,000 each and 10 grantees at $5,000 each. In order to receive funding at the $5,000 grant amount, we will ask you to provide additional information on the application form.

We recognize that mining activity often has detrimental impacts to all aspects of community and cultural well-being and IEN/WMAN encourages projects that strive to protect the environment, ecosystems, cultural resources, and community health from mining impacts. This includes projects that may require scientific/legal/technical expertise.

Applications for the Program are accepted three times per year. The deadlines are: June 1, October 1, and February 1. Applicants shall be notified of the funding decision within one month of the application deadline. Emergency assistance outside of these grant cycles is also available on a case by case basis (see details below).

If you have any questions about whether or not your project would qualify, please contact us to talk about it prior to the application deadline. Simone Senogles, Indigenous Environmental Network, (218) 751-4967, and Sayokla Williams, WMAN Indigenous Caucus Coordinator at You can also email questions to We are happy to talk with you.

Grant proposals and reports should be submitted using the application form. A downloadable form with the application questions can be found here, but proposals will only be accepted through the online form.

Grant priorities will be acknowledged as follows:

  1. Priority is given to community-based grassroots groups and Tribal/First Nations directly affected by mining. We strive to award at least half of our funding under this program to Indigenous-led organizations because mining has disproportionate impacts on Indigenous Peoples and their traditional lands.
  2. Secondarily, we will fund proposals from regional or national organizations in the U.S. and Canada working on mining-specific issues.
  3. Priority is given to applicants with an organizational or mining-specific program budget under $75,000 U.S.

We do not fund the following:

  1. Proposals related to oil, gas, pipeline, fracking, or tar sands issues.
  2. Work or organizations outside of the U.S. and Canada.
  3. General operating expenses including rent, utilities, etc.
  4. Staff salaries above 10% of the total grant amount ($300 for a $3,000 grant, $500 for a $5,000 grant).

Before you apply, please read the following additional grant criteria:

  • The Program funds work that directly addresses hard rock/mineral/metals mining issues, such as gold, silver, iron, copper, zinc, nickel, tin and lead, uranium, placer, and coal mining. Legacy, closed and abandoned mine issues are included and do fit this Program. Your proposal should discuss which type of mining issue is impacting the environment or the environment or your community and how you will use these Program funds to address it.
  • Requests must be project-specific for needs such as scientific/technical/legal assistance, organizing, education and outreach, development of materials, media development, reports, travel, mailings, interns and consultants, etc. to be fulfilled within the next twelve months on a specific mining campaign.
  • Although funds are not intended to support an organization’s general operating expenses, a small proportion (up to 10%) of the funding can be applied as work compensation or staff salaries for the organization submitting a grant application. However, there is no such limitation for external contractors hired to complete a project-specific task or objective.
  • Applicants may only receive one grant per twelve-month cycle. This limit does not apply to emergency grants (see details below).
  • Applicants must comply with the tax status and requirements referred below. If you do not have a tax ID number, you must secure fiscal sponsorship by another organization that has a tax ID number.
  • All grant awards will be issued via check and must be made payable to an organization. Checks will not be made payable to an individual.
  • If your organization receives general support from True North Foundation we may require additional information. Please contact us prior to submitting your application.

Emergency Grants

Emergency funds for extremely time-sensitive projects that fall in between grant cycles (i.e., needs that could not have been anticipated at the time of the last cycle and cannot wait to be addressed until the next cycle) may be applied for. These grants are limited and awarded on a case-by-case basis. They will not exceed $3,000. Please email or call Mary Costello or Simone Senogles at the phone numbers/emails provided in this grant notice.

Grant reporting requirements:

  • Within twelve months of receiving the IEN/WMAN Mini-Grant, recipients shall submit a 1-2 page report. Please be aware that a group may not be considered for future grants until a report is submitted.
  • For reports, please answer the following two questions:
    • Outcomes: How did these funds benefit your issue or programs (1/2 page)? Please also include one sentence that sums up how you used the funding to achieve a successful outcome of your work. This information may be shared with funders, within the IEN and WMAN networks, and on our websites. When possible, please submit photographs that profile the project and accomplishments achieved.
    • How was the grant spent (Example: $1,000 printing, $800 plane ticket, $150 hotel, $1,050 public meeting expenses = total $3,000).
  • Reports should be emailed to, or sent to 220 S. 27th St. Suite B Billings, MT 59101, Attn: Kerri Wolenetz. If an extension is needed for using the funds and/or sending the report, please contact us.

Any questions? Don’t hesitate to ask. We are happy to help, please contact Sayokla Williams, WMAN Indigenous Caucus Coordinator at and Simone Senogles, Indigenous Environmental Network, (218) 751-4967 You can also email questions to

Continue to the application form.