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Matching Awards Program
Matching Awards Program
OUTDOOR EXPERIENCES PROGRAM AREA
The NFF supports results-oriented, on-the-ground, projects that improve the quality, condition, and care of Outdoor Experiences on National Forests by:
- Improving, or maintaining recreation resource connectivity including, and similar to: trail maintenance, bridge and crossing construction or repair, and installation of trail drainage structures; and/or
- Engaging youth, volunteers, or diverse, underserved or under-engaged populations in hands-on stewardship activities; and/or
- Employing youth and/or veterans crews to implement on-the-ground conservation, stewardship and/or restoration work.
Projects should generate tangible conservation outcomes or enhance high quality recreational experiences for the users of the National Forest System. Funds cannot support improvements of hardened facilities including, and similar to: campgrounds, parking lots, restrooms, visitor centers, and major signage.
FOREST HEALTH PROGRAM AREA
The NFF supports results-oriented, on-the-ground, citizen-involved projects that maintain and/or restore ecosystem resiliency on National Forests by:
- Promoting ecosystem structure, function and diversity; and/or
- Promoting forest health through the removal or control of non-native invasive species, and/or reintroduction of native plants and trees.
Projects should be consistent with or supportive of identified large-scale conservation initiatives. The NFF will only consider monitoring projects focused on determining the long-term effectiveness of NFF funded on-the-ground work.
The NFF encourages projects that cohesively integrate Outdoor Experiences and Forest Health program areas. Ideal projects will have a strong connection to each of the individual program areas, and effectively integrate both in a clear, direct manner.
INTEGRATED PROJECTS PROGRAM AREA
Examples of integrated projects include, but are not limited to the following:
- Engaging community volunteers to complete riparian plantings as part of a watershed-scale restoration project;
- Utilizing youth crews from underserved communities to complete habitat stewardship work and forest stand treatments.
The most compelling projects will strongly integrate the Outdoor Experiences and Forest Health Program Areas, and will receive a weighted advantage in evaluation. A project will not be eligible for full weighted advantage if it does not cohesively integrate the two program areas, or only does so nominally.
CIVIC ENGAGEMENT AND COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
In addition to focusing on the above Program Areas, MAP requires projects show a strong commitment to civic engagement and community involvement through direct public involvement. In order to be eligible for MAP funding, projects must contain significant, legitimate community involvement or civic engagement in the pre-implementation, implementation, or post-implementation phase. Typically, this involves the use of volunteers in project implementation, or the implementation of projects selected as an outcome of a formal collaborative-planning process. Note that the community engagement portion of the project does not necessarily have to occur in the portion of the project receiving MAP funding, although the project narrative must clearly describe the community engagement component. The standard public involvement component of the NEPA process is insufficient to meet this requirement.