National Forest Foundation

Community Capacity Land Stewardship Program


The National Forest Foundation Community Capacity and Land Stewardship Program (CCLS) provides funding to increase the capacity of organizations implementing large scale restoration projects that benefit National Forests and Grasslands.

Program partnership

Funding for CCLS is currently provided by the US Forest Service Pacific Northwest Region, Pacific Southwest Region, and Alaska Region, and coordinated with multiple additional regional leadership partners.

Desired Outcomes

As a whole, CCLS seeks to help community-based and collaborative organizations remove barriers to watershed and/or landscape scale restoration projects, and help facilitate job creation and retention and business development in their region. Each regional program offered has specific, unique desired outcomes.


CCLS is limited in scope to projects that benefit National Forests and Grasslands in California (USFS Region 5), Oregon/Washington (USFS Region 6), and the Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska (USFS Region 10). The USFS Region 5 program is currently on hiatus pending additional funding.


The NFF holds one competitive CCLS round for each of the eligible Forest Service regions each year. Organizations may have only one CCLS award open at a time.

Proposal Deadlines and Requests for Proposals

Deadline: November 14, 2017 at 10:59 pm PST
Funding Source: USFS Pacific Northwest Region

Informational Webinar Recording from October 30, 2017 at 11:00 am PDT

Southeast Alaska
Deadline: May 1, 2018 at 9:59 pm ADT
Funding Source: USFS Alaska Region

Informational Webinar April 17, 2018 at 11:00 am ADT


The California CCLS program is currently on hiatus pending additional funding. As the situation changes, information will be posted here and announced on the NFF Conservation Listserve


501(c)3 nonprofits, universities, and Native American tribes are eligible to receive CCLS grants. If an organization does not meet this eligibility requirement, it must utilize an eligible fiscal sponsor, in compliance with the NFF Policy on Fiscal Sponsorship.

Funding Restrictions

Applications will not be considered from:

  • Federal agencies;
  • Regional, state or local governmental entities; (Except Alaska)
  • For-profit organizations;
  • Consultants;

The following project types are not eligible for funding:

  • Funding for outreach and/or education as a primary project component;
  • Funding for any form of advocacy or litigation;
  • Funding provided to the U.S. Forest Service or any other federal entity.

Match Requirements

CCLS does not require a cash or in-kind match, but all contributions should be documented to show project leverage.

Letters of Support

All applications must include a letter of support from the Forest Supervisor of each National Forest or Grassland unit included in a proposal. Do not submit letters from District Rangers or any additional letters of support.

Application Process

Applications submission is via an electronic submission process. Submission instructions are listed in the RFP.

Funding Type

CCLS awards federal funds provided through cooperative agreements from individual U.S. Forest Service regions. CCLS award funds cannot be used to meet the matching requirements of any federal award program.

Typical Awards (2017)

Average Request: $22,489
Median Request: $23,996
Average Award: $18,820
Median Award: $20,000
% of Proposals Funded: 50%
% of Dollars Requested Funded: 42%


A public impact report for the CCLS program in Oregon and Washington was recently completed, showcasing the outcomes from 2011-2014.

Contact information

If you have questions not answered on this website or in available CCLS Request for Proposals, please feel free to contact Adam Liljeblad, Director, Conservation Awards at 406.830.3357 or