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Grants for Nonprofits : Recreation


Web Sites | Books | Additional Possibilities


A compilation of web pages and books of potential interest to nonprofit organizations seeking funding opportunities related to recreation.

Web Sites

Access Fund
The Access Fund is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to keeping climbing areas open and to conserving the climbing environment. To see what the Access Fund is doing in your area concerning either rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering or bouldering, click on the online map.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Athletics/Sports RFPs Posted by the Foundation Center PND Digest
Each RFP listing provides a brief overview of a current funding opportunity offered by a foundation or other grantmaking organization. Interested applicants should read the full RFP at the grantmaker's Web site or contact the grantmaker directly for complete program guidelines and eligibility requirements before submitting a proposal to that grantmaker.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Baseball Tomorrow Fund
Deadline : July 1 and October 1
The Baseball Tomorrow Fund is a joint initiative of Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association. The mission of the Baseball Tomorrow Fund is to promote and enhance the growth of Baseball in the United States, Canada and throughout the world by funding programs, fields and equipment purchases, designed to encourage and maintain youth participation in the game. Grants from the Baseball Tomorrow Fund are designed to be sufficiently flexible to enable applicants to address needs unique to their communities. The funds may be used to finance a new program, expand or improve an existing program, undertake a new collaborative effort, or obtain facilities or equipment necessary for youth baseball or softball programs. Average amount : $50,000
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Capital Region Community Foundation
Patrons Fund
Click on site search and then type in "patrons fund" Funds restricted for grade school and high school playgrounds, playground equipment, athletic fields, athletic field equipment, swimming pools and swimming pool equipment. Applicants must be K-12 school.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

DALMAC Fund Application Form
The DALMAC fund was established to promote bicycling in Michigan. Programs that encourage bicycle use, teach bicycle safety, or develop bicycle routes or facilities are examples of eligible promotional activities. The Fund's revenue source is the DALMAC (Dick Allen Lansing to Mackinaw) bicycle tour. Since 1973, DALMAC has been sponsored by the Tri-County Bicycle Association (P. O. Box 22146, Lansing, MI 48909-2146). Grants for an organization's approved project are available beginning March 1. Applications must be received by March 15 to be considered for funding this year. A project completion report will be required if your project is approved.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Detroit Pistons Basketball Company Contributions Program
The Detroit Pistons make charitable contributions of game tickets and memorabilia to nonprofit organizations involved with youth development and on a case by case basis. Support is given primarily in Michigan.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Detroit Red Wings Inc.
Red Wings in the Community
The Detroit Red Wings organization is fortunate to have the ability to assist hundreds of nonprofit organizations each year by donating a limited number of autographed items to be used in charity fundraising events. If you represent a Michigan-based organization and would like to request a donation of autographed memorabilia or an appearance by one of our players, please mail or fax your request on event or company letterhead to the following address or fax number:
Detroit Red Wings Community Relations
600 Civic Center Drive
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 567-0296 - fax
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Detroit Tigers Community Outreach
The Detroit Tigers make charitable contributions to nonprofit organizations involved with recreation and youth development. Support is given primarily in the Detroit, Michigan, area.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Finish Line Youth Foundation
Youth Athletic and Wellness Programs Supported
Deadline: Dec. 31
The Finish Line Youth Foundation provides funding to organizations in the communities in which company stores are located, or communities where donations to the Foundation are raised. (Finish Line operates over 510 stores in 46 states, including Michigan.) The Foundation supports nonprofit organizations primarily focused on assisting children and young adults 18 and under in the areas of athletics or wellness. Applications are accepted year-round and are reviewed quarterly. Visit the above website for more information.
Also listed under Children and Youth.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Fundsnet Sports Grants
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Fundraising for a Skatepark
Practical advice on raising funds for a skateboard park from Anthony Gembeck, TransWorld Skateboard Business Magazine.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Georgia Municipal Association
The GMA shares grant announcements regarding public safety, recreation, environment, and other issues of importance to municipalities.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Hasbro Community Relations
The mission of the Foundation is to improve the quality of life for disadvantaged children through age 12 by supporting innovative, model, direct-service programs in the areas of healthk education and social services. The Foundation also funds universally accessible play spaces. Most often, local grants for model community programs range from $500 to $35,000 each. For multi-site expansions, awards start at $35,000 and are granted over a period of one to three years. Priority will be given to economically disadvantaged areas for playground refurbishment and/or new construction. For more information, contact Hasbro Children's Foundation, 32 W. 23rd St., New York, NY 10010. Proposals are reviewed three times per year; there is no deadline for applications. For more information contact: Jane S. Englebardt, 917-606-6226.
Also listed under Children and Youth.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Jerome Bettis "BSH Foundation"
Provides programs, activities, and services that continue to help youngsters reach their goals and improve the quality of life. Provides scholarship funds for athletics and sports activities in Detroit, MI.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Kaboom Playground Opportunities
Imagine an entire playground materializing before you in one day. Imagine collaborating with your children, friends and neighbors to plan your very own unique play space. Imagine 200 volunteers working together to build a playground and enforce strong community bonds. Imagine being a part of a KaBOOM! Playground Project!
Do you know of an organization in need of a new playground? Can you mobilize your local community to support a volunteer-led project? If so, this may be the perfect opportunity for you!
Thanks to the generosity of our many funding partners there are ongoing opportunities to build new, safe playgrounds across our nation. We are currently doing outreach to locate potential Community Partners in cities all across North America for playgrounds. Ideal Community Partners are usually child-serving, non-profit organizations but could be community development organizations, neighborhood coalitions, charter schools, or any organization that can mobilize a volunteer force and is in need of a playground.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Mia Hamm Foundation
Provides funds for opportunities for women in sports and bone marrow research.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Michigan Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Grants
Offering grants to encourage the use of old railroad lines as "linear parks". Eligible grant projects include planning and design efforts, legal assistance, brochures or other educational materials, ecological assessments, and buying land. For more information, call (517) 393-6022.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

National Alliance For Accessible Golf
Deadline: December 31
The Alliance, along with the United States Golf Association, believes that golf should be open to everyone, even those with disabilities. The Alliance administers the grant application process for organizations that provide golf programs for individuals with disabilities. The Alliance encourages programs that provide inclusive programming as well as opportunities that allow participants with disabilities and participants without disabilities to learn and play the game side by side. Because the grants committee believes that the values of the game are best learned by playing it, the Alliance focuses its attention on programs that provide opportunities for participants to experience golf to the fullest extent possible. Programs should offer affordable and accessible opportunities for participants to experience golf both during scheduled programming and after programming is concluded. The Alliance will consider requests for funds to assist with costs for the following core golf program costs: golf course or driving range access, golf instruction, standard and adaptive golf clubs and bags, adaptive teaching equipment, transportation of participants to and from programming, and inclusion activities. The Alliance accepts applications on a rolling basis in 2011. Additional information can be found on the Web site.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

National Football League
Charities Youth Education, Recreation, and Physical Fitness Grants
NFL Charities, a nonprofit organization founded in 1973 by member clubs of the National Football League, awards grants in the following areas: youth education, recreation, and physical fitness (impact grants and partner grants); sports-related medical research; volunteer recreation programs (League-managed programs only); and NFL Player organizations. Through its grant programs, NFL Charities seeks to enhance the educational opportunities for school-age youth. Organizations applying for funding through this program may seek either an Impact Grant or a Partner Grant and must specify the type of grant on the proposal. Organizations may not apply for both types of grants in the same funding cycle.
Through its Impact Grants, NFL Charities seeks to support education, mentoring, or youth-centered programming that show potential for national impact. NFL Charities will support the program development, pilot, and implementation phases of school-based or youth agency-based projects. The ultimate goal is to fund the enhancement of existing systems or the creation of new initiatives to address the educational and recreational needs of school-aged youth on a national scope. NFL Charities is dedicated to encouraging children to stay in school, to achieve academically, and to participate in enriching after-school and recreational activities in order to promote their development into productive members of society. Major multi-year proposals will be considered, with a maximum of four years of funding. Each year of funding is contingent upon meeting grant requirements; grants over $250,000 may require a site visit. Grants will only be awarded to national nonprofit organizations defined as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Code. No grants will be awarded to individuals.
Through its Partner Grants, NFL Charities seeks to support organizations with established strategic partnerships or previous grantmaking relationships with the NFL. Partner grants will be awarded to organizations that focus on youth-centered educational and recreational programming. Grants typically range from $5,000 to $25,000. Multi-year grants will not be considered. Grants will only be awarded to national nonprofit organizations defined as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Code. No grants will be awarded to individuals or individual schools.
Grant applications must be postmarked by August 1. Organizations will be notified by mail by the end of the calendar year about the status of grant proposals. To request application materials and/or inquire about the status of grant proposals, contact: Jessica Rich, NFL Charities, 280 Park Avenue, 17th Floor, New York, NY 10017; E-mail: richj@nfl.com.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

National Football League Foundation Grassroots Program
Grants Enhance Football Fields in NFL Target Markets
The NFL Foundation Grassroots Program, administered by the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and funded by the National Football League Foundation, provides support for nonprofit neighborhood-based organizations and middle or high schools to improve the quality, safety, and accessibility of local football fields. Matching Field Surface Grants of up to $250,000 are available to help finance the resurfacing of community, middle school, or high school football fields. General Field Support Grants of up to $50,000 are available for capital projects not associated with the actual field surface, such as the installation/refurbishment of bleachers, concession stands, lights, etc. All organizations applying for funds must be located within NFL Target Markets and serve low- to moderate-income areas within those markets. A list of eligible communities is included in the Request for Proposals (RFP). The application deadline is October 16, 2017. Visit the LISC website to download the RFP.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

National Scholastic Athletics Foundation (NSAF) Development Grants
Deadline: September 1, 2015
The National Scholastic Athletics Foundation (NSAF) invites high school track and field teams and clubs, as well as individual athletes, to submit an application for NSAF Development Grants. The grants have helped teams and clubs purchase equipment, enable coaches' education, and more. As an additional dimension to the program, each recipient must also participate in a volunteer service program in their community, sign the USA Track & Field's "Win with Integrity" pledge card, and take the International Association of Athletics Federations' "Real Winner" education program.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

NRA Foundation
The NRA Foundation National and State Fund grants are focused on the following general categories: Youth Programs, Range Improvement and Development, Public Safety, Education and Training, Wildlife and Natural Resource Conservation and Constitutional Research and Education.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

People for Bikes
People for Bikes, whose mission is putting more people on bicycles more often, accepts requests for funding of up to $10,000 for facility, capacity, and education projects. Bikes Belong also accepts successor proposals from previously funded projects. Applications reviewed on quarterly basis.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Playground and Playground Equipment Funders
Funding suggestions from Snider & Associates, Inc., sellers of playground equipment.
Also listed under Education.
(Last checked 05/28/08)

Playground Equipment Fundraising Ideas
Features the playground dance, cocktail and appetizer party, plant and garden sale, pizza week, selling t-shirts, playground campaign, general raffle, pasta dinner, school fair or carnival, and benefit concert. Sponsored by Snider and Associates of Michigan Playground Equipment.
Also listed under Education.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Recreation Departments Turn to Corporate and Nonprofit Sponsors
Throughout the state, recreation departments are turning to corporate or nonprofit sponsored events to raise revenue to offset budget cuts. It is changing the way recreation departments determine which programs they will offer -- and how directors do their jobs.   "It's a tough economy," said Mike Maisner, executive director of the Michigan Recreation and Park Association in Okemos, which has a membership that includes about 200 recreation departments throughout the state. "What makes the most sense is a combination of funding sources." For the full article, visit the Detroit Free Press Archives and purchase a copy or check to see if your library has a copy of the article in some other format. Frank Witsil, "Cities find new ways to fund recreation; Sponsored events can bring in cash", Detroit Free Press, September 3, 2006.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Recreation Grants Available through the State of Michigan, try the Michigan Electronic Grants Administration and Management System Portal (EGrAMS).

Recreation Grants Available from the U.S. Government
"Search by keyword" and type in recreation. Courtesy of the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA). Includes both recreation and environmental grants.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

The Road Runners Club of America (RRCA)
Dedicated to supporting the growth of grassroots running clubs, training programs, and running events while promoting the common interests of runners throughout the United States. The Kids Run the Nation Fund, an initiative of the RRCA, supports nonprofit organizations and schools in the U.S. that are interested in implementing or currently have a youth running program. Grants of $500 to $1,000 are provided to running clubs and other nonprofit organizations such as parent booster clubs, PTAs, etc. Elementary and middle schools that provide organized after-school running programs are also eligible to apply. Since the goal of the grant program is to have kids running at least once a week for multiple weeks, funded programs should offer more than just one-time events. The grant application deadline is August 1, 2018. Visit the RRCA website to submit an online application.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Tiger Woods Foundation
Sponsors golf clinics in major metropolitan areas in the U.S. for young people historically denied access and exposure to the sport, supporting programs that promote educational achievement and job opportunities for inner-city and other disadvantaged youth, and participate in programs and events that promote racial harmony and help people understand and appreciate the value of inclusiveness.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Tony Hawk Foundation
Skatepark Grants
Established by professional skateboarder Tony Hawk, the nonprofit Tony Hawk Foundation works to promote high-quality, public skateparks in low-income areas throughout the United States.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

United States Handball Association
First Ace Development Grants
The U.S. Handball First Ace Development Program aims to provide new and emerging handball initiatives with financial and equipment support to aid in their growth towards strong and sustainable handball programs. The grants target new development in clubs, youth service organizations, schools and colleges with the ultimate goal of creating self-supporting programs that continually promote the game to new players and markets. The First Ace Development Program also aims to provide existing programs with financial support and replacement equipment and travel grants. Separate forms are available for Travel Grants, Equipment and Replacement Equipment grants.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

United States Soccer Foundation
The U.S. Soccer Foundation awards grants on an annual basis to support both soccer programs and field-building initiatives in underserved areas nationwide. Grants are provided to support all aspects of the beautiful game - from assisting programs with operational costs to creating Safe Places to Play.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

USA Football Association
Application Deadline : May 17
USA Football, the official youth football partner of the National Football League, leads the development of the game through educational programs and innovative resources. USA Football's Equipment Grant Program is committed to enhancing the football experience for all at the youth and amateur levels. Grants of equipment valued at $1,000 are provided to youth football organizations that hold 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. Grants of equipment valued at $1,500 are provided to high school football programs. A total of $1 million will be awarded to youth and high school football programs across the country.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

USA Today's Sports Charities
USA TODAY identified more than 350 public charities and private foundations connected to professional athletes or teams. Newly formed charities, those operated by teams and those which appeared dormant were eliminated from the analysis to focus on established non-profit organizations founded by sports figures. The figures are based on the charities' most recent IRS returns available, usually for 1999. Source: USA Today, July 25, 2001.
(Last checked 06/12/18)

Women's Sports Foundation Funding Opportunities
The Women's Sports Foundation is a leading provider of funding and resources for grants and scholarships to girls and women in sports. Grant eligibility info, application forms, submission deadlines... all the tools are right here. Try out the search engine.
Also listed under Grants for Individuals - Athletics.
(Last checked 06/12/18)


The books mentioned on this page are available for public use in the Michigan State University Libraries. If you are unable to visit our library, consider visiting a Foundation Center Funding Information Network Partner in your home state or a local public library in your home town. If the books are not available there, ask about interlibrary loan or visit a local bookstore to find out whether they can be purchased.

GET THE GOLD : A PHYSICAL EDUCATOR'S GUIDE TO GRANT WRITING. Journal article by Dennis Johnson and Tammy Schilling appearing in JOPERD--The Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, Vol. 72, Issue, 3 March 2001. Note available to MSU faculty, staff, and students.
As we enter the 21st century, there is increasing pressure on public schools and teachers to demonstrate student competence. Numerous states and individual school systems currently use end-of-year tests to measure the progress of their students. These tests are designed to evaluate competence in the "academic" subjects (e.g., reading, writing, math, and science). Physical education and other so-called minor subjects (e.g., art, music, shop, home economics) receive little or no attention in these year-end assessments. In addition, these "minor" subject areas are generally the first to have their already depleted budgets slashed even further and the last to get funding for equipment and facility upgrades.
Physical educators have a variety of financial needs that must be met if they are to maintain a high-quality program. There are replacement supplies such as balls, nets, and hockey blades. Then there is new equipment to be purchased (e.g., balance beam, volleyball standards, tumbling mats). Physical educators often face dilemmas such as, "Do I order replacement balls or a new tennis net?" The possibility of purchasing roller blades to implement in-line skating or a climbing wall to expand the curriculum is but a dream for many of them. But does it have to be this way? Are there other options for physical educators interested in expanding their curriculum and obtaining more equipment?
This article provides a guide for obtaining "wish-list" items and facility upgrades. Grants are often available for such projects, especially if the funds will be used for both the school and the community or for after-school programs. Grants are often available for such projects, especially if the funds will be used for both the school and the community or for after-school programs. The process of procuring this external funding involves three basic steps:
(1) locating sources of funding,
(2) learning the application procedures and eligibility requirements, and
(3) writing and submitting a grant proposal.
Physical educators must be willing to invest significant time and effort in this process. In most cases, simply writing a grant proposal is not enough to procure funds. Rather, "there must be a process of planning, and of research on, outreach to, and cultivation of potential foundation and corporate donors".

Additional Possibilities

Many community foundations fund parks and recreation type projects in their local areas. For more information, see Michigan Community Foundations

If you can visit a Foundation Center Cooperating Collection such as the MSU Libraries, try searching the latest edition of Foundation Directory Online Professional. The following foundations located in Michigan indicated interest in funding recreation projects at one time:

Samual Higby Camp Foundation, 145 S. Jackson, Jackson, MI 49201
Geographic focus: Michigan, but primarily Jackson County

Carls Foundation, 333 W. Fort St., Ste. 1940, Detroit, MI 48226-3134; (313) 259-3070)
Geographic focus: Michigan

Cronin Foundation, 203 E. Michigan Ave., Marshall, MI 49068-1545; (269) 781-9851
Geographic focus : Calhoun County

Dorothy U. Dalton Foundation, Inc., c/o Greenleaf Trust, 100 W. Michigan Ave., Ste. 100, Kalamazoo, MI 49007-3965; Telephone: (269) 388-9800
Geographic focus : Kalamazoo County, MI

Alden & Vada Dow Fund, 315 Post St., Midland, MI 48640-2658; (517) 839-7444; info@abdow.org
Geographic focus: Michigan, but primarily Midland County.

Eastpointe Community Chest/Networking Forum, P.O. Box 442, Eastpointe, MI 48021-0442
Geographic focus: Michigan, but primarily in Eastpointe and East Detroit, MI.

Myrtle E. & William G. Hess Charitable Trust, c/o Banc One Investment Mgmt. Group, 611 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48226; (313) 225-3124; Therese_Thom@cm.fcnbd.com
Geographic focus: Oakland County, but primarily Catholic institutions

Louise G. Kaufman Endowment Fund, c/o MFC First National Bank, P. O. Box 580, Marquette, MI 49855; (906) 228-1244
Geographic focus: Marquette, MI

Donald & Mary Kosch Foundation, (formerly Donald F. Kosch Foundation), 6 West Ln., Dearborn, MI 48124-1193
Contact: Donald F. Kosch, Pres., Application address: 2450 Wyoming St., Dearborn, MI 48126-1518, tel.: (313) 842-2375
Geographic focus: Michigan, and in particular Ann Arbor, Dearborn, and Detroit.

August Lilja Family Memorial Fund, c/o Northern Michigan Bank & Trust Co., 1502 W. Washington St., Marquette, MI 49855-3118;
Application address: c/o Judge John A. Torreano, Probate/Juvenile Court Div., P.O. Box 609, Iron Mountain, MI 49801
Geographic focus : Iron Mountain, MI

Meijer, Inc. Corporate Giving Program, c/o Public and Consumer Affairs Dept., 2929 Walker Ave. N.W., Grand Rapids, MI 49544-9428
Geographic focus : areas where Meijer stores are located

Pistons Palace Foundation, c/o Detroit Pistons, 2 Championship Drive, Auburn Hills, MI 48326; (248) 377-8244
Geographic focus: tri-county metropolitan Detroit area

Edward F. Redies Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 411, Saline, MI 48176-0411; (734) 429-9421
Application address: c/o R&B Machine Tool Co., 118 E. Michigan Ave., Saline, MI 48176
Geographic focus : Washtenau County, MI

Simmons Foundation, 3390 Travis Pointe Rd., Suite B, Ann Arbor, MI 48108; (734) 996-0900
Geographic focus: Michigan, but primarily the Ann Arbor Area.

Skillman Foundation, 600 Renaissance Center, Suite 1700, Detroit, MI 48243; (313) 393-1185
Geograpic focus: southeastern Michigan

Harvey Randall Wickes Foundation, Plaza N., Suite 472, 4800 Fashion Square Blvd., Saginaw, MI 48604; (517) 799-1850
Geographic focus: Saginaw, MI area.

Wilkinson Foundation, c/o Comerica Bank-Detroit, P. O. Box 75000, MC3302, Detroit, MI 48275; Application address: Warren Wilkinson, 2 Woodland Place, Grosse Pointe, MI 48230
Geographic focus: southeastern Michigan.

For more information about each of these funders check Guidestar.Org. If a 990-PF is available, you can find out how much money a funder has to work with, how much they gave away in the particular year, who received the grants, how much, and if there are any limitations.


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Last revised 06/12/18

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