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Resilient Park Access Grant and Coaching

NRPA is excited to announce funding and coaching to advance community-driven, systems-level strategies for equitable park access that improves the resilience and health of communities. This funding will support projects that advance community-driven, systems-level strategies for equitable park access that improves the environmental resilience and health of communities. This grant program will support park and recreation professionals in partnership with leaders from community-based organizations. Projects should address system-wide park access planning, data collection/analysis, policies and/or capital improvements with a focus on creating climate-ready parks. NRPA will fund 6-10 communities at $300,000 to $500,000 each for a total of 2 years and 6 months.

Agencies selected will have access to the following benefits: 

  • Ongoing coaching from NRPA and additional national and local professionals to support local planning efforts, through:
    • Ongoing group and individual calls tailored to advancing project and program goals.  
    • Site visits to each grantee from national and local professionals
  • Trainings, professional development, peer-to-peer support and networking opportunities to share lessons learned and address challenges. 
  •  National visibility through: 
    • Articles in Parks and Recreation magazine, Open Space Blog, partner publications, and national press releases 
    • Opportunities to present at national conferences, including the NRPA Annual Conference 


  • The main applicant must be a local government agency that plans, builds and/or operates parks (e.g., municipal park and recreation department, tribal recreation department, public works department that manages parks etc.) or affiliated 501c(3) non-profit organization.  
    • If the applicant is not a local government agency, the applicant is required to submit a letter of support for the project being proposed from the park and recreation agency director or equivalent.    
  • Community leadership (I.e., community-based organizations) must be included in planning, implementation and stewardship of projects. 
  • At least one signed letter, email or video/audio interview of support from each category: 
    • local elected leader (for example, mayor or county executive) 
    • park and recreation director, and 
    • community leader (outside of parks and recreation)  
  • Demonstration of a clear commitment to advance systems-change that prioritizes justice, diversity, equity and inclusion. 

Application Timeline

·         Application Open             March 1, 2021   

·         Informational Webinar     March 11, 2021

·         Application Closes           April 23, 2021

·         Cities Selected                 May 21, 2021

To Learn More

NRPA hosted a Zoom webinar on March 11th, 2021 at 2pm ET to provide an overview of the program and help answer applicant questions. To view the webinar, please click here.

We will answer questions and be available to provide additional information once the application opens on March 1st, 2021.