Funding for Pollinator Projects
Flow Hive is donating 100% of profits from sales of our Flow Pollinator House that sold out last year in the United States and Australia. This funding is allocated to organizations that support local grassroots pollinator projects in these two countries.
Our Flow Pollinator house is created from a combination of repurposed Western Red Cedar timber offcuts and unused panels from our Flow Hive 2 and sustainably sourced bamboo.
Specifically targeted towards solitary nesting bees—which make up the majority of over 19,000 bee species worldwide—these cosy homes provide and encourage solitary nesting pollinators to take up residence in your garden.
After a careful selection process by our Judging Panel, and your input voting for your favorite project, we are pleased to announce the nine projects that received funding:
USA PROJECTS FUNDED
Effective Pollinator Gardening in the Big Country
Planting of demonstration pollinator gardens with plants suitable to the local native pollinators for ongoing use in education and community engagement.
The proposed project involves working to create new pollinator gardens and enhance existing gardens at three nonprofit sites in Abilene, Texas involving on-going BCMGA activities and using those sites as venues for educating the public regarding creation and support of pollinator gardens throughout the community. The three sites include Swenson House, FaithWorks and First Central Presbyterian Church (FCPC) Meditation Garden. This project will also involve the BCMGA Greenhouse Committee which will identify, purchase and promulgate native plants for use at BCMGA projects. Junior Master Gardeners, another outreach of BCMGA will participate in pollinator education for children as allowed by the curriculum of participating schools. Children participating in Junior Master Gardeners, as well as children throughout the community, will be invited to join the educational events while some educational events will specifically target children.
Enhancing Pollinator Habitat and Education at the DPS Hub Farm
Upgrading bee yard facilities with students to engage community in pollinator education initiatives.
Durham Public Schools Hub Farm
We will improve our ability to engage students and the community with pollinator education through three projects: Project 1) We will improve the safety and aesthetics of our bee yard through the addition of a viewing platform, observation benches, an attractive fence, a border of pollinator plants, and interpretive signage. This will enable us to more effectively and safely educate students on our daily field trips. Project 2) We will purchase two demonstration hives for educational use: one that will stay permanently installed at the Hub Farm, and a separate single-frame viewer model that we can bring to schools and community events. Project 3) We will celebrate the grand opening of our new bee yard by hosting a community celebration including refreshments made with farm produce and prepared by our students, local music, and fun activities for all ages during World Bee Day 2019.
Urban Pollinator Awareness Project
Develop a curriculum module on beekeeping and the importance of pollinators for delivery to university and community members and run a demonstration workshop series.
The intent of the Urban Pollinator Awareness Project is to develop a module to teach within the University of San Francisco's Environmental Studies curriculum and in association with student and volunteer groups, to inform the community of the need to help urban pollinators. Such support would include the planting of native plant gardens, building and installing pollinator houses, establishing direct engagement with youth groups, and increasing awareness through social and traditional media. We will also run beehive demonstrations in our community garden and train the trainer workshops. The project’s action group would be comprised of students and faculty from all aspects of USF's academic schools - Education, Business, Health Profession, Arts & Sciences, and Law. Such an approach helps the students gain experience working in a cross-functional group to achieve a common goal and brings a broader skill set to bear to enable action, education, and advocacy.
Mobile Pollinator Garden Creation Station
Empower community to plant pollinator gardens by providing training and access to a mobile trailer equipped with all necessary tools and supplies.
AdkAction will coordinate with partners to plan and implement pollinator conservation on public and private lands in the Adirondack Park. and create a shared-use ‘Mobile Pollinator Garden Creation Station’ to help reduce the cost and time required to install community-level pollinator gardens. This 2-year project will engage volunteers and local organizations to create 40 pollinator gardens that meet conservation requirements. The Creation Station will be an enclosed trailer containing tools and supplies necessary to create a pollinator garden. Currently, when a community group, volunteer, or homeowner decides to install a pollinator garden, they face many economic and logistical challenges. AdkAction will create the mobile, colorful trailer full of tools and supplies necessary to mobilize volunteers to create pollinator gardens quickly and efficiently. In addition, we will hold training sessions to empower landowners, volunteers, teachers, and other potential community leaders to install a new pollinator garden in their community.
AUSTRALIAN PROJECTS FUNDED
Native Bee Workshop
Conduct workshops to educate the community about native bees and how to keep them, and stock a nursery with pollinator-friendly tree stock.
Our project will fund a bi-annual Native Bee Workshop for the community to learn about native solitary bees and stingless bees. The event gives attendees the information they need to build their own Original Australian Trigona Hive (native beehive) and keep their own native stingless bees at home. Held near our nursery which stocks herbs and natives known to be stingless bee “favourites”, participants can buy native trees that are known to be good suppliers of resin and pollen. We would also install a fully operational native bee hive on site for members and students to observe, as well as serving as a prop for the workshops. We would like to establish permanent stock in our nursery of Lemon Scented Gum, swamp Bloodwood, Red Flowering Gum, Lemon Myrtle and Pin Cushion Hakea, as well as smaller herbs and flowers such as Basil, Daisies and Marigolds among many more. The profits from the sales will be used to purchase new stock supplies.
Barcoding Bees for Biodiversity Assessments
Investigate the true diversity of native bee species using DNA barcoding.
Our project will provide a robust, accurate way to ascertain the true diversity of native bees in the urbanised region of the southwest WA biodiversity hotspot. Using cutting-edge molecular technology, to DNA barcode the native bee specimens I have collected during my surveys of native bees in the urbanised region of southwest WA.
Despite being a biodiversity hotspot, no systematic surveys of native bees have ever been undertaken. Most concerning is that most native bees in Australia have yet to be described. With no formal descriptions, and existing descriptions being of limited use when published over a century ago, and few taxonomic keys, providing an inventory of the species we have here is challenging. DNA barcoding, however, is a robust way, that has been applied across taxa, to delineate species. Each species has its own molecular signature, and by using the distinct DNA sequences, this allows species to be delineated with confidence and is a key tool used to complement traditional morphology-based taxonomic assignments.
Introduction to bees and Pollinators (school holiday program)
Inspire pollinator champions through a school holiday education program for children hosted by a beekeeping club.
Our goal is to educate 120-160 primary school-age children about bees and pollinators through a school holiday education program held at Illawarra Beekeepers facility in Sutherland. We plan to hold 6 x 3-hour sessions. During the session, students will learn about how pollinators provide an essential ecosystem service and ways they can help to protect bees and pollinators. They will learn about honey bees and how they differ from native bees and have an opportunity to dress in protective clothing and see inside a beehive, learn about harvesting honey from a Flow Hive versus a traditional hive. Participants will be shown how to make pollinator homes, and be given one, along with an information pack to take home to encourage home activities, like planting a flower garden, and encouragement to continue participating at the Club.
Trees for Bees – “Bees Need Trees and Trees Need Bees!"
Support schools to install native bee hives and plant pollinator habitat.
We install native beehives and gardens into NSW schools. We support schools to install: Australian Stingless Native (Tetragonula Carbonaria) beehives and create habitat by planting endemic native trees, shrubs and bush-tucker foods that provide habitat and food for pollinators, wildlife and ultimately humans. The garden design layout is structured around Aboriginal designs and symbols including the Rainbow Serpent, Emu, Meeting Place, or any other suitable and approved designs proposed by students. Once construction is completed the hive (or hives) are installed, and we mark the occasion with an ‘unveiling’ of the hive by an indigenous student, or nominated member of the school community. We adopt a whole school approach, by encouraging them to take ownership and ongoing management of the project. We have a number of schools on a waiting list for our ‘Trees for Bees’ program, and this project funding would enable another school to participate.
Siskiyou Seeds for Pollinators by Bee Girl
Research the quality of different flower types for pollinators and develop a top quality seed mix for use in the community.
Hive Mind by Think Like a Bee
Engaging communities to plant a web of pollinator habitat corridors throughout the city.
Bee-friendly Community Gardens by 3000acres
Conduct workshops in community gardens on beekeeping, native bees, pollinator habitat and building pollinator hotels, and support the gardens to become a hub for pollinator protection.
Habitat for Homes by Mullumbimby SEED
Create a pollinator habitat at a community garden and conduct workshops on honey bees and pollinators that engage the community in protecting pollinators.
Pollinator habitat is crucial for the existence and wellbeing of all pollinators. Honey bees and native pollinators are responsible for pollinating a third of the world’s food crops.
We believe these projects offer real-life experiences for people to get involved in, visit and be an active part of. Bringing people together in community projects helps to build stewards who will care for all pollinators for generations to come.
This funding was made possible by the sales of our Pollinator House. A beautiful home for native solitary pollinators, made from up-cycled off-cuts of timber from the Flow Hive manufacturing process.
Meet Our Judges
Senior Program Manager
Kelly Rourke is the Senior Program Manager of North American focused non-profit Pollinator Partnership (P2), based out of San Francisco, California.
Pollinator Partnership’s mission is to promote the health of pollinators, critical to food and ecosystems, through conservation, education, and research.
Schools Landcare Officer
Lyn Thomson has worked with Richmond Landcare since 2010 as their School’s Officer. At present they have over fifty-member schools. Over the years, Lyn has worked with many schools, teachers and students on various environmental projects, from installing “Cool Cubbies” and frog hotels to studying local wetlands as well as many other projects. A few years ago, she became fascinated with Australian native bees, and began incorporating them into her work.
Mark Dykes has a vibrant hands-on history of working for honey bees and native pollinators, with a focus on habitat restoration. He was the former Chief Inspector for the Texas Apiary Inspection Service, a former supervisor for the Florida Department of Agriculture, and previously worked as the apiary manager for Dr. Jamie Ellis at the University of Florida. Currently, he runs a honey bee education and management firm in Maryland called Apis Works.
Prior to working with honey bees he worked for The Nature Conservancy in Florida in habitat restoration. His experience resulted in Mark becoming a vocal advocate for a systems approach to habitat management and restoration, and working with several government and private entities advising them on habitat management.
Representing the Flow worker bees
Free has worked with Flow for 3 years but has been passionate about bees for as long as she can remember. Fascinated by bees as a child, she would visit the local honey man with her dad and collected her first honey at 9 years of age. Many years on, Free and is still an enthusiast.
She took up a position with the Flow team after seeing Flow on Australian Story and realizing this was the type of company she always wanted to work for. She has now found her colony – it seems it was just meant to bee.
Flow Hive Co-Inventor
Stuart and Cedar Anderson, a father and son team from Australia invented the Flow frame technology, which has inspired thousands of new beekeepers around the world. An invention which took a lifelong love of bees and over a decade of work.
Having been a third-generation beekeeper since the tender age of six, it was during a particularly nasty summer honey harvest that Cedar decided, “there had to be a better way.” Now, Cedar is at the head of Australian manufacturing success story, Flow, having shipped more than 51,000 orders all around the world.
As part of the company’s commitment to business with positive purpose, AU$40,000 (approx US$15,000 in the USA and AU$20,000 Australia) was offered to not-for-profit organizations, educational institutions and community groups, to projects which support pollinating insects. Organizations applied for funding from $1000 – $5000.
The Pollinator Support Program funded projects that, for example, plant or protect pollinator habitat, educate people about the importance of pollinators and how to help them, or advocate on behalf of pollinators.
At Flow, we aim to have a regenerative impact on the planet through innovation in beekeeping that connects people to nature and inspires care for our shared world.
A very intricate relationship has developed between plants and their pollinators, as both parties rely on one another for survival.
However, with the increase in intensive agricultural farming, monoculture, pesticide and insecticide use, the very existence of pollinators is threatened, which in turn threatens our existence. Without bees and other pollinators, we would live in a food desert.
As beekeepers, it is our responsibility to look after and care for our bees, as custodians of these incredible creatures.
We can further help bees by providing habitat for them, and other pollinators. By creating a garden mindfully, you can help pollinators—even if you don’t keep bees yourself.
Just like humans, bees need a well-rounded diet, which is why growing a variety of flowering plants (providing different types of pollen and nectar) is so important. Check out our Bee-friendly Gardening Factsheet for more information.