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The NFF is currently soliciting proposals for its Matching Awards Program (MAP), a grant program that provides matching funds for direct on-the-ground and citizen-based monitoring projects benefiting America’s National Forests and Grasslands. MAP funds can be used to support conservation and restoration projects benefiting wildlife habitat , recreation, watershed health, and community-based forestry. By pairing federal funds—provided through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Forest Service—with non-federal dollars raised by award recipients, the resources available to nonprofit partners to implement projects are effectively doubled.
A common thread connecting NFF program areas is an interest in action-oriented projects that enhance the viability of natural resources while benefiting and directly engaging surrounding communities. The NFF will accept applications from non-governmental, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations and Native American tribes working on or adjacent to National Forests and Grasslands throughout the United States. Through MAP, organizations completing on-the-ground conservation work can apply for matching funds up to twice a year, though only one MAP award may be active at any time.
MAP projects are selected for funding through a two-stage process. Applicants must first complete an online questionnaire. Those that successfully complete the questionnaire are invited to submit a proposal to the NFF. The proposals are evaluated, and a subset of those receives funding. Please note that funding rounds are expected to become increasingly competitive. The process from proposal submission to notification of funding generally takes about four months.
All MAP awards require at least a 1:1 cash match of non-federal funds. Federal funds and in-kind contributions should be noted to show leverage for a project, but cannot be matched by MAP funds. No NFF funds may be directed to the U.S. Forest Service or any other federal entity, and projects must be completed within one year of the project award date, which typically begins about three months after the initial proposal deadline. MAP funding is available to support specific conservation and restoration projects and does not provide general programmatic support.