The Western Colorado Community Foundation (WCCF) 2020 Community Grants for Youth Outside! focuses on youth development through outdoor recreation. WCCF recognizes that youth are under stress across our communities, leading to anxiety, depression, and in extreme cases, suicide. Current research shows a wide range of benefits for children and youth through outdoor experiences, including improvements in physical health and emotional well-being as well as increased learning, personal, and social skills. Our 2020 Community Grants will target projects that directly help youth address stress and anxiety through organized outdoor recreational activities.

The Community Grants for Youth Outside! funding opportunity is available to organizations that operate within the seven counties we serve (Delta, Eagle, Garfield, Mesa, Montrose, Ouray, and Rio Blanco). This funding is made possible through WCCF’s community grants endowment and generous donors across western Colorado.

Goal of 2020 Community Grants for Youth Outside! To fund youth development projects for ages 12-18 years, through outdoor recreation activities, in order to build confidence and self-esteem, strengthen resilience, and reduce stress and social isolation.

Primary areas of focus are projects that address one or more:

  • Develop or expand outdoor recreation activities for in-school/after-school or summer programs.
  • Increase opportunities for participation in outdoor recreation activities for at-risk and low-income youth.
  • Support youth team building activities and other leadership opportunities.
  • Engage college students and community members in mentoring youth through outdoor recreation activities.

 
Additional guidance

    • All projects should support a social/emotional learning component that emphasizes the potential harmful effects of excessive screen time and social isolation and the importance of spending time outside, engaged in confidence, resilience and team building activities.
    • Preference will be given to projects that involve collaboration of multiple organizational partners and/or develop intergenerational activities.
    • Grants will not support marketing or sponsorship of an event.

Funding Range: Grants will be awarded in the $2,500 – $10,000 range.  Funding up to $100,000 will be available to grant.

Criteria: Eligible organizations must be a 501 (c) (3) or other qualified charitable entity (school, church, govt.), recognized by the IRS and working within WCCF’s seven county region. Organizations should also be registered with the Colorado Secretary of State and be in good standing.

Grant Application will open Monday, February 24th and the deadline to apply is Friday, April 3, 2020, 5pm MST.  For more information, contact Tedi Gillespie, Director of Grants and Community Outreach at tgillespie@wc-cf.org. For all technical questions regarding site administration of our grant center and application process, contact Talitha Costello, Administrative Assistant at tcostello@wc-cf.org