A healthy and active community is one of the goals for parks and recreation organizations. We've previously written about the importance of building community , however, it's not always possible for all members of your community to be active on there own. While there can be many obstacles for otherwise motivated people to get moving, your programs and initiatives can help, with the right funding. There are many grant programs that can help with financial complications, whether it's for your parks and recreation organization to build programs or for you to reduce the cost for your community.
Ranging from sponsored grants to local, regional and national ones, there are many you can promote or apply for. Here are some examples of grant funding methods to provide for your community members:
1) Sponsored: In Canada, ParticipACTION provides a grant for teen physical activity programs to get your community's youth up and running. Grants of up to $500 will fund equipment, space rentals, nutrition, transportation and/or instruction. In the United States, the Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation provides grants of up to $25,000 to support public education and community improvement.
2) Provincial/State: Provincial and state governments often provide generous grants for parks and rec organizations to enrich their communities. In Alberta, the Community Initiatives Program awards up to $75,000 for initiatives that enhance and enrich communities throughout its province. The state of New York provides a number of grants, one being the Snowmobile Trail Grant Program, which sends funds to local governments to develop and maintain snowmobile trails.
3) National: There are quite a number of nationally funded grants available in the USA and Canada and these tend to be the most substantial. The Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund via Canada's Economic Action Plan grants up to $150 million to improve the quality of community facilities and provide economic benefits. Finally, in the US, the United States Department of Agriculture provides a Community Facilities Direct Loan & Grant Program to develop essential community facilities in rural areas.
While we've highlighted a few examples, there are many grants available with a simple online search. This can alleviate a lot of the financial pressures of building your community. Which grants has your organization received? Let us know on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Google+, to stay up to date with all of your PerfectMind news.