Parks and Recreation Grants

Parks and recreation grants are primarily funded by the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) Act of 1965. These funds were enacted to help preserve, develop, and ensure access to outdoor recreation facilities to strengthen the health of communities. The LWCF has been the principal source of financing for land acquisition for outdoor recreation by the four federal agencies – the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and U.S. Forest Service. The LWCF also funds a matching grant program to assist states in recreational planning, acquiring recreational lands and waters, and developing outdoor recreational facilities.

Funds from the LWCF and foundations may be allocated to support parks and recreation grants through programs such as:

  • Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance (RTCA) Program: Assists community groups, nonprofit organizations, tribes, and government entities to design trails and parks, conserve and improve access to rivers, protect special places, and create recreation opportunities.
  • National Wildlife Refuge Friends Grant Program: Provides seed grants to projects aimed at increasing the participation of organizations in the effective management of natural resources within the National Wildlife Refuge System.
  • Wild Ones: Lorrie Otto Seeds for Education (SFE) Fund:  Supports the purchase of native seeds and plants for projects that will enhance and develop youth appreciation for nature, and that emphasize student and volunteer involvement at both the planning and implementation stages and increase the educational value of the site.
  • National Trails Training: Supports technical assistance activities that are aimed at enhancing trail planning, design, construction, maintenance, and management for trails located on federal, state, local, and private lands.
  • Watchable Wildlife for Youth and Families: Aims to attract young people into the forests, parks, trails, and other wild areas through technology and social media in order to promote BLM wildlife viewing destinations, and provide recreation, interpretation, and education to a new branch of the American public.

The Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department ... applies for over $2 million in capital grant funding annually, and this service has allowed us to expand our search beyond our standard development grants to programming grants as well as funding opportunities that are available only to nonprofits.... eCivis offers several excellent features. The ability to research a grantor's past funding history allows our staff to determine whether a grantor's mission aligns with your proposed project.

Jean Matthews
Senior Planner
County of Palm Beach Parks and Recreation, FL

Click the button below to learn more about how eCivis can help your organization find and manage parks and recreation grants for your community.

Parks and Recreation Grants for Local Governments