Local habitat restoration project can win $50K with your vote

A Pensacola-based non-profit, Southern Eco Restoration Projects, is one of 51 finalists in the running to win up to $50,000 in funding as part of Tom’s of Maine’s “50 States for Good” program. The resources would go to support their Emerald Coast Shoreline Restoration to plant 10,000 trees for habitat restoration along the Florida Panhandle.

For the first time, one non-profit finalist from every state and Washington DC is represented with a total of $150,000 in funding available for grassroots projects that support healthy, human and environmental goodness. The organization with the most votes will receive $50,000 while five runners-up will receive $20,000 each to complete their project. The public can vote at www.facebook.com/tomsofmaine through Oct. 9.

The finalists were chosen by a judging panel of passionate leaders in the nonprofit community including star of “The Vampire Diaries” and non-profit founder Ian Somerhalder, Laura Burge of the social action network Care2, nonprofit/philanthropic strategist, author and Huffington Post columnist Lisa M. Dietlin and Sam Davidson, president of Cool People Care.

“We’re always inspired by the level of creativity and commitment from local non-profits who tirelessly seek to address their community’s needs,” said Susan Dewhirst, goodness programs manager at Tom’s of Maine. “But, they can’t do it without the public’s help. Today, voting for your state’s finalist and rallying friends, family and co-workers to do the same not only elevates their cause but is a simple way you can help them extend the impact of their work.”

Your readers can help this local organization with the click of a mouse. A public vote – which recently kicked off at www.Facebook.com/TomsofMaine and runs through October 9 – will determine six winners. The organization with the most votes will receive $50,000 while five runners-up will receive $20,000 each. I’m hoping you might be interested in doing a story on the importance of organizations like SERP and how your readers’ votes can make a difference for the community.

You can find a press release with more information about the program and other finalists here. I’d be happy to set up an interview with a representative from the organization, should you be interested. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or for more information.