STAMFORD, Conn. – Keep America Beautiful announced Lowe’s has donated $1 million to support 50 local community service projects and Keep America Beautiful’s Great American Cleanup, the nation’s largest community improvement program. The 2015 projects range from restoring neighborhood parks and planting community gardens to leading disaster restoration initiatives and large-scale cleanups.

The Keep America Beautiful/Lowe’s grant program engages local volunteers to take action to benefit communities across the country. Over the past four years, Lowe’s has supported Keep America Beautiful and its affiliates with more than $4 million in contributions and the support of Lowe’s Heroes employee volunteers. With the help of the 2015 grant, Lowe’s and Keep America Beautiful will have mobilized more than 40,000 volunteers since the partnership began.

Here are some highlights of Lowe’s grant initiatives that will take place in 2015:

  • Keep Texas Beautiful (Austin) – A $20,000 grant will allow Keep Texas Beautiful to provide 12 drought-affected affiliate communities with the support and materials needed to create and maintain native plant demonstration gardens with the goal of educating and engaging people to grow natives in their home gardens and at their workplaces.
  • Keep Las Vegas Beautiful – Selected Las Vegas City schools each will receive a $4,000 grant to help bring community murals to low-income areas. The mural program successfully brings together community advocacy groups, professional muralists and neighborhood youth to generate community involvement and neighborhood pride.
  • Keep Knoxville Beautiful – Keep Knoxville Beautiful received a $20,000 grant to plant 6,000 bulbs along a main highway exit interchange and another 58,000 bulbs at two additional exits. Future plans include working with the city to add shrubs and trees to enhance these roadways.
  • Keep Georgia Beautiful (Atlanta) – With the help of Lowe’s Heroes, Keep Georgia Beautiful will use a $20,000 grant to begin outfitting all of Georgia’s State Parks with Nature Explore classrooms – nature-based play and learning spaces. The initial pilot parks are among the most visited in the state.
  • Keep Cincinnati Beautiful – Lowe’s Heroes will join Keep Cincinnati Beautiful and additional volunteers to repair a community playground, revitalize nearby abandoned buildings with fresh paint and clean and landscape vacant lots with the support of a $10,000 grant.
  • Keep Riverside Clean & Beautiful – A $5,000 Lowe’s grant will help Keep Riverside Clean & Beautiful continue to clean and restore the Santa Ana River and local waterways in Riverside, California, providing a healthier habitat for natural wildlife and vegetation to thrive. It also will support the affiliate’s efforts to communicate the importance of water conservation as California manages through a statewide drought.

Keep America Beautiful affiliates and partnering organizations received nearly 245 Lowe’s grants the past three years. More than 1,000 Lowe’s Heroes participated alongside other community volunteers, who together contributed nearly 196,000 volunteer hours to improve local communities. Through this partnership, nearly 1 million flowers and bulbs have been planted; more than 225 playgrounds/recreational areas have been restored; and more than 1,000 community gardens have been planted.

Last year, the Keep America Beautiful/Lowe’s grants supported service projects in 27 states, including a new pollinator/sensory garden, walking trail and kayak launch on Pelahatchie Bay in Mississippi, the revitalization of 12 neglected parks in Flint, Michigan, and the creation of new areas to rest and play along a wide stretch of Port St. Lucie, Florida.