The Wisconsin Conservation Endowment’s donor-advised grants provide annual funding to qualified conservation projects. These grants were created by conscientious members of the public looking to invest in the protection and restoration of Wisconsin’s natural resources.

CALL FOR PROPOSALS NOW CLOSED FOR 2017

The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin no longer accepting applications for 2017 donor-advised conservation grants.

 

How to Apply

The next grant cycle will open in November 2017.  Review the eligibility requirements for each donor-advised fund below. If your project is eligible for funding, follow the application instructions to submit your application.

Applicants are encouraged to discuss their projects prior to submitting an application. Contact:

Caitlin Williamson, Director of Conservation Programs
(608) 266-1430 or [email protected]

Application Instructions

  1. Complete the application in full.
  2. Provide the following supporting documentation:
    • Proof of tax-exempt status or government EIN;
    • If your project is located on public property, submit a letter of support from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources property manager for the relevant property.
  3. Submit all materials to [email protected] by 5 PM on February 1st.

Grant Timing

Applications are due February 1st. Applicants will be notified of the decision in March, with funding available in April. A project report is due within one year of receiving funding and prior to applying for another grant from the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin.

Reporting Requirements

Grant recipients are required to submit a report within one year of receiving the grant, and prior to applying for another grant from the Foundation. Project report forms are provided at the time the grant award is made.  Reports must include at least two high-quality, compelling photographs, which may be used by the Foundation for marketing purposes.

Current Donor-advised Grant Programs

Hughes Jeffords Chippewa Flowage Conservation Fund

Chippewa Flowage; Photo courtesy of the Wisconsin DNR

About the Fund

The Hughes Jeffords Chippewa Flowage Conservation Fund is a donor-advised endowment fund established to provide funding to preserve, protect and enhance Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Lac Courte Oreilles, and U.S. Forest Service-managed lands and waters of the Chippewa Flowage. The primary purpose of the Fund is to support natural resource management activities including habitat protection, restoration, wildlife monitoring and management, fisheries management, invasive species monitoring and control, and enforcement activities. The secondary purpose is to support outreach and education programs and projects.

Eligible Projects

  • The grant process is open to any qualifying exempt organization such as government agency or 501c3 nonprofit organization.
  • Grants between $500 and $1,000 are available.
  • Projects must support natural resources programs and projects that take place in or directly benefit the Chippewa Flowage.
  • Indirect costs (operating or administrative expenses not related to the project) are not permitted.
  • Past grant recipients MUST submit a grant report prior to applying for additional funding.

Example Projects

  • Monitoring purple loosestrife on the Chippewa Flowage
  • Creating fish habitat on the Chippewa Flowage
  • Restoring campsites on the Chippewa Flowage

 

Norma and Stanley DeBoer Quiet Trails Fund

About the FundProject funded by Norma and Stanly DeBoer Quiet Trails Fund. Patrick Marsh Installing Sign

The Norma and Stanley DeBoer Quiet Trails Fund is a donor-advised endowment fund established to support Wisconsin’s quiet trails (hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, etc.) open to the public.

The primary purpose of the fund is for the creation and maintenance of trails, including but not limited to: identification or trail locations; surveying; purchase of materials; construction; clean-up activities; repairs of trail surfaces, railings, or existing signage; and fees for necessary professional services. The secondary purpose is the enhancement and promotion of quiet trails including but not limited to: habitat improvement adjacent to the trail; development, creation and installation of directional or explanatory signage and trail guide booklets; and modest costs of events designed to increase awareness and/or use of walking trails.

Eligible Projects

  • The grant process is open to any qualifying 501c3 nonprofit organization and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
  • Grants between $500 and $1,000 are available.
  • Projects must support quiet trails open to the public.
  • Funding cannot support projects associated with trails open to motorized vehicles (except authorized maintenance or construction vehicles, or motorized equipment for the disabled). This includes, but is not limited to: trails for snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, and motorcycles.
  • Past grant recipients MUST submit a grant report prior to applying for additional funding.

Example Projects

  • Developing a Milwaukee County Trails Map Guide
  • Building hiking trails at the Sauk Prairie Recreation Area
  • Trail resurfacing at the Eagle Nature Trail
  • Improving hiking trails at Pattison State Park
  • Developing interpretive signage for the boardwalk at Horicon Marsh
  • Maintaining snowshoe trails in northern Wisconsin

Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area Fund

About the FundTurtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area_Joshua Mayer

The Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area Fund is a donor-advised endowment fund established to preserve, protect and enhance the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources-managed lands and waters of the Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area.

The primary purpose of the Fund is to support services, supplies, and equipment needed for the preservation, protection and enhancement of the Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area. The secondary purpose includes funding salary or wages for individuals involved in the project, or when 1) the applicant is not from the immediate Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area (TFSWA), or 2) when the project is outside of the Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area but the goals and objectives of the project directly relate to a problem or issue inside of the TFSWA and there is a clear benefit for the TFSWA.

Eligible Projects

  • The grant process is open to any qualifying exempt organization including 501c3 nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and school groups.
  • Grants between $500 and $5,000 are available.
  • Projects must encompass natural resource programs and projects that take place in or directly benefit the Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area.
  • The Fund cannot be used to purchase real estate, or construct or improve buildings, roadways, or recreational trails.
  • Past grant recipients MUST submit a grant report prior to applying for additional funding.

Example Projects

  • Conducting a wildlife survey of the Turtle Flambeau Flowage
  • Restoring shorelines and habitat of the Turtle Flambeau Flowage
  • Monitoring invasive species in the Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area
  • Conducting breeding bird surveys in the Turtle Flambeau Flowage

 

David & Joyce Weizenicker Endowment Fund for State Parks

David and Joyce Weizenicker June 2011

About the Fund

The David & Joyce Weizenicker Fund for State Parks is a designated endowment fund established to provide funds to Wisconsin State Park System friends groups to support projects that facilitate accessibility for senior citizens, especially trail development, maintenance and restoration, and the development and maintenance of rest stops including benches, overlooks, and interpretive signage.

Eligible Projects

  • The grant process is only open to friends groups of Wisconsin State Park System properties.
  • Projects must be related to facilitating accessibility for senior citizens at Wisconsin State Park System properties.
  • Applicants must provide a one-for-one match at least equal to the value of the grant request. In-kind donations of goods or services may be counted toward the match along with dollar donations.
  • Past grant recipients MUST submit a grant report prior to applying for additional funding.

Example Projects

  • Building an accessible scenic observation deck in the Kettle Moraine State Forest
  • Developing a handicap-accessible trail at Kinnickinnic State Park
  • Creating educational and interpretive signage for a trail at New Glarus Woods State Park

 

Wisconsin Rare Plant Preservation Fund

About the FundCirsium pitcheri. Photo by WDNR

The Wisconsin Rare Plant Preservation Fund was established to support projects that protect Wisconsin’s rare plants and lichens through monitoring, inventorying, and/or preservation.

Eligible Projects

  • Eligible applicants include local, county, state or federal agencies, and 501(c)(3) organizations whose mission includes the preservation of rare plants.
  • Projects must be based in Wisconsin or have a primary impact on rare plants or lichens of Wisconsin.
  • Projects must involve the monitoring, inventorying, and/or preservation of rare plant or lichen species in Wisconsin.
  • The project must address one or more rare plants or lichens from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ Natural Heritage Working List. Applicants must specifically reference the rare plant or lichen species that the project will address within the application.
  • If the project is located within a State Natural Area, the applicant must include a letter of support from the Department of Natural Resources’ Bureau of Natural Heritage Conservation. If the project is located on another public property, the applicant must include a letter of support from the property manager.
  • Preference will be given to projects that have matching funds.
  • Indirect costs are not eligible.
  • Projects involving invasive species removal, gardening, or education are not eligible.
  • Past grant recipients MUST submit a grant report prior to applying for additional funding.

Example Projects

  • Conducting a rare plant inventory to identify species and locations of rare plants at a site.
  • Installing boardwalks and fences to protect rare plant species.
  • Developing a database to monitor and share information on rare lichens.

 Donate to One of These Funds

To support one of these endowment funds, please Donate Now online. In the “Donate to an Endowed Fund” field, enter the name of the fund you would like to support.

Interested in starting your own endowment fund? Learn more about our Wisconsin Conservation Endowments, email Development Director [email protected]  or call us at (866) 264-4096.