Environmental Stewardship

Environmental Stewardship

Everyone deserves to live in a healthy home and enjoy a clean, pollution-free environment. The Barancik Foundation supports programs that protect the environment and encourage people who might not otherwise experience nature to go beyond their neighborhood and learn more about their world. Our partners help families escape the stresses in life by interacting with nature and, after understanding its benefits, they become inspired to help preserve it for future generations.


Monthly Savings at Girls Inc. from Solar Panels

Nature Makes the Best Classroom

If children lose contact with nature, they won’t fight for it. We’re aiming to change that.

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Other Featured Programs

Florida’s reef tract protects our shorelines from major storms and attracts more than 16 million visitors a year, supporting over 71,000 jobs and providing $6.3 billion to Florida’s economy alone. Over the last 40 years, Florida’s corals have declined in many areas by more than 90 percent. With support from numerous donors, including Barancik Foundation investments totaling $625,000, Mote Marine Laboratory built a new research lab in Key West to expand its coral reef and research restoration.

Mote scientists utilize a breakthrough technique called “re-skinning” to rapidly fuse and form live coral over dead coral skeleton. They also study climate change, marine life conservation, sustainable aquaculture, and other issues that impact our environment both here in Florida and around the world.

For 16 months harmful algae bloom plagued Sarasota’s shoreline, bringing with it toxic air and sick wildlife—but Red Tide messed with the wrong community.

Armed with teams of scientists and decades of research, Mote Marine Laboratory established the Red Tide Institute to be a hub of innovative development focused exclusively on creating promising technology to mitigate algae blooms’ effects. Mote attracted widely-respected expert Dr. Cynthia Heil to lead the new Institute, however capital was required to lock in her salary and enhance the Institute’s chance for securing more funding.

With public health on the line and a historic blow to our tourism economy, Barancik Foundation recognized the time to be bold in supporting our community and ecosystem. We provided a $751,487 grant over five years to ensure that Dr. Heil and her team could make uninterrupted progress towards developing innovative ways to control red tide and its impacts.

With research and resources in hand, the Red Tide Institute will work tirelessly to lessen the impact of future algae blooms on our people, wildlife and economy.

Grants & Initiatives

A grant of $300,000 over two years to The Bay Park Conservancy to build capacity within the new organization and support fundraising efforts.

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens: $20,000 to support the organization’s fundraising efforts at its Luncheon in the Gardens series.

A grant of $751,487 to Mote Marine Laboratory over five years to fund the Directorship of the Red Tide Institute. Mote recruited Dr. Cynthia Heil, a widely respected red tide algal bloom expert, to lead the newly created institute.

Chicago Zoological Society: $1,000,000 over five years, to support the Sarasota Bay Dolphin Research Program. This is the longest running research of bottlenose dolphins in the world and serves as the reference population for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Dolphin are the closest mammal to humans in the region, eating the same fish and breathing the same air. They are sentinels of our ecosystem and this research data helps inform us of changes in our environment.

See the full story here.

Chicago Botanic Garden: $25,000 to support the Science Career Continuum, which delivers five years of environmental science education to low-income students. Annually the program serves 65 at-risk students, many of whom will be first-generation college students.

A $50,000 grant to the Partners for Green Places Initiative Fund at Gulf Coast Community Foundation to support independent evaluation of efforts to implement water and energy efficiency improvements at local nonprofits.

A $2 million grant to “Power” Marie Selby Botanical Gardens’ sustainability and greening focused master plan.  A centerpiece of the master plan is the environmental aspects of the Sky Garden, with virtually every inch incorporating sustainability education and clean energy “Powered by Barancik Foundation.” The Sky Garden includes a 20,000 square-foot advanced solar array structure; storm water management facility for irrigation and other reuses; green walls and roofs to instill beauty and create shade; and an urban food garden for garden-to-table use by the restaurant.

$250,000 in funding to Marie Selby Botanical Gardens to support the accelerated transition of Historical Spanish Point under the administration of Selby Gardens due to the pandemic-induced economic fallout.

A grant of $940,000 to Sarasota Bayfront Planning Organization for wetlands, bayou, and mangrove restoration. Part of the bayfront master plan, this funding will provide a restored waterfront with significantly enhanced accessibility for visitors interested in walking, kayaking and nature education.

A grant of $106,000 to Sarasota Bay Watch for expenses related to bivalve restoration in Sarasota Bay.

Girls Inc. of Sarasota County: The Barancik Foundation Solar and Conservation Initiative Pilot will outfit Girls Inc.’s building with solar panels and launch its conservation education curriculum. Over a 10-year period, Girls Inc. will save an estimated $221,033 in energy expenses. The youth at Girls Inc. will learn about science and consumer behavior by monitoring the panels’ energy production. They will also form an Energy Council to lead the organization through a complete greening transformation from energy efficiency, gardening, to waste management and more.

A grant of up to $130,000 to Girls Inc. to upgrade electrical system at the organization.  Barancik Foundation will ensure previously funded solar panels deliver maximum energy savings to the nonprofit.

This summer select students from Boys & Girls Clubs, Girls Inc. and Laurel Civic Association will attend a new week-long environmental education camp. Developed in partnership with youth-serving organizations Asolo Rep, Conservation Foundation, Mote, and Selby Gardens, Barancik Foundation is investing $39,100 to offer summer camp to low-income youth. Each day of camp will be led by a different environmental organization, rotating campers through the array of natural assets available in our community. Youth will learn about science and nature through hands-on experiments and reflective outdoor exercises. Campers will also attend Asolo Rep’s production of Jungle Book, creating a memorable educational tie between the environment and arts.

A grant of $56,435 to Gulf Coast Community Foundation to establish the Project Nature Bridge Project Fund to support environmental education for underserved youth.

Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast: $65,000 to support the Youth in Nature Initiative. This program will partner with local nonprofits to conduct educational nature field trips on the Conservation Foundation’s preserves. Youth will learn about flora and fauna, bird watch, kayak and explore native environmental habitats. A $5,000 grant was also awarded to support the organization’s mission and efforts to leverage funds at its Palm Ball.