Saltwater Connections Receives Creating New Economies Fund Grant

Harkers Island, doctor NC (May 7, 2015) – Saltwater Connections received a Creating New Economies Fund (CNEF) grant of $9000 from The Conservation Fund’s Resourceful Communities program.  This grant will provide technical and financial support to the Foods Program at Cape Hatteras Secondary School of Coastal Studies and to expand similar programs to Ocracoke and Down East communities.

“The Cape Hatteras Foods Program provides an excellent hands-on learning opportunity to address local food production and healthy eating issues with youth and to build the next generation of local food advocates and entrepreneurs,” said Karen Amspacher, Saltwater Connections coordinator and Core Sound Waterfowl Museum and Heritage Center director.

RCP_logo_color_cropped (2)Resourceful Communities awarded 35 grants totaling more than $300,000 to support innovative “triple bottom line” projects.  These efforts integrate sustainable economic development, environmental stewardship and social justice.  The program is funded with generous support from the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, The Oak Foundation, USDA Rural Communities Development Initiative and the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.  Dedicated to building local capacity, CNEF grants of up to $15,000 support a range of projects that include mobile food markets; increasing low-income consumers’ access to healthy food; community trails and eco-tourism; “green collar” job training programs and more.  Open to the program’s 500+ network of community organizations, faith-based groups and rural towns, the small grants result in an average return of $12 for every $1 invested.



Saltwater Connections is a collaborative of community members and organizations united by a shared common

interest in building stronger communities along the Outer Banks National Scenic Byway now and for the future.  The collaborative crafts innovative projects that share and perpetuate the maritime culture of the region, encourage economic diversity, promote community health and wellness, and serve the needs of all residents.




The Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust was established in 1947 and is now one of the largest private trusts in North Carolina. Its mission is to improve the quality of life and quality of health for the financially needy of North Carolina. The Poor and Needy Division responds to basic life needs and invests in solutions that improve the quality of life and health for financially needy residents of Forsyth County. The Health Care Division promotes wellness statewide by investing in prevention and treatment. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. serves as sole trustee.


About the Oak Foundation:

Oak Foundation is a group of philanthropic organisations which, since its establishment in 1983, has given over 3,000 grants to not-for-profit organisations around the world.  The Foundation commits its resources to address issues of global, social and environmental concern.  The commitment to The Conservation Fund’s Resourceful Communities programme helps underserved communities access, grow and distribute safe, affordable, local healthy food.



The Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation (ZSR) is committed to improving the quality of life of all North Carolinians. ZSR invests in statewide, regional and community-based organizations that are dedicated to building an inclusive, sustainable and vibrant state. The groups that ZSR supports both work to build healthy, robust communities at the local and regional level and engage in education, civic dialogue and advocacy around issues of importance to communities and to North Carolina. ZSR currently focuses on the areas of community economic development, environment, public education, social justice and equity and strengthening democracy. The Foundation is a 78-year-old private foundation based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. For more information or to learn more about ZSR, visit


About The Conservation Fund/ Resourceful Communities:

Established in 1991, Resourceful Communities, a specialized program of The Conservation Fund, supports a network of 500+ grassroots organizations, faith-based groups and resource partners with an effective combination of capacity building, direct investment, and facilitated networking to connect stakeholders with otherwise hard-to-reach resources.  Resourceful Communities’ “triple bottom line” approach integrates environmental stewardship, social justice and economic development.  Their Healthy Eating/ Active Living and Food and Farm Initiatives help community organizations strengthen efforts to increase access to healthy food and opportunities to be active.  The Conservation Fund (TCF) is a national nonprofit established in 1985 to protect working lands and waterways and promote sustainable economic development; TCF has protected more than 7.5 million acres nationwide, including more than 200,000 acres here in North Carolina.  <>  <>


Karen Amspacher

Saltwater Connections



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