National Forest Foundation | Matching Awards Program | National…

Matching Awards Program

Connecting People to Forests

Photo by Forest Stewards Guild

Recent Program Update

In 2023, the National Forest Foundation (NFF) announced changes to its flagship competitive grant program, the Matching Awards Program (MAP). The adjustments were a result of over two years of work to collect feedback to align the program with current National Forest System needs, and the NFF strategic plan.

The resulting program, MAP: Connecting People to Forests, focuses primarily on in-person community engagement and completion of appropriate stewardship activities. Program goals are to create lasting change that will allow all communities, especially underserved communities, opportunities to benefit from activities on National Forest System lands or adjacent public lands.

Refer to the summary and the Request for Proposals (RFP) linked below for full information.

Key Dates

  • April 19, 2024: Application period opens for Round 2 2024 projects
  • May 20, 2024: Informational Webinar on MAP
  • June 21, 2024: Deadline for Round 2 MAP Applications
  • Fall 2024: Application period opens for Round 1 2025 projects

Summary of MAP Program Requirements

  • Geographic Scope: National, must take place on US National Forests and Grasslands or adjacent public lands, and demonstrate benefit to National Forest System lands
  • Funding Source: Federal funds via the US Forest Service
  • Eligible Applicants: Nonprofit organizations, Tribal governments and organizations, and universities
  • Match Requirements: 1:1 nonfederal cash match
  • Program Areas: All MAP applications must focus on in-person community engagement, and have a stewardship component
  • Project Timing: Eligible projects are no more than 18 months in duration, and start two months after the application deadline
  • Letters of Support: All applications must include a letter of support from the District Ranger of each National Forest or Grassland unit included in a proposal
  • Environmental Compliance: All permitting and environmental compliance work (including but not limited to NEPA) must be complete before submitting a MAP application
  • Administrative: Applicant must have or be able to obtain a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) if selected for funding

Photo by Sitka Conservation Society

Request for Proposals - Full Program Details

Click below for the MAP Round 2 2024 Request for Proposals (RFP), which contains full program requirements and instructions for how to apply.

The NFF held an informational webinar about the Matching Awards Program on Monday, May 20, 2024.

Applicant Resources

If you have reviewed the RFP and still have questions about program eligibility, feel free to contact the NFF. Requesting feedback from NFF staff about eligibility is encouraged to ensure you are submitting a proposal that will not be disqualified. Be sure to reach out well in advance of the deadline to ensure there is time to answer your questions. Contact information is provided below.

Additional resources include:


If you have questions about the NFF's Matching Awards Program that are not answered on this webpage or in the MAP Request for Proposals, please contact:

Allison Powell, Conservation Awards Coordinator, at 629.462.0381 or [email protected]