America the Beautiful Challenge
Intended to streamline grant funding opportunities for new conservation and restoration projects around the U.S., the America the Beautiful Challenge consolidates funding from multiple federal agencies and the private sector to enable applicants to conceive and develop large-scale projects that address shared funder priorities and span public and private lands.
The America the Beautiful Challenge is a public-private grant program for locally led ecosystem restoration projects that invest in watershed restoration, resilience, equitable access, workforce development, corridors and connectivity, and collaborative conservation, consistent with the America the Beautiful Initiative.
The America the Beautiful Challenge coordinates funding from multiple Federal agencies and private philanthropy into one competitive grant program. This streamlines the application process, enabling larger, more impactful cross-boundary projects, while making it easier for states, Tribes, territories, local groups, non-governmental organizations, and others to apply for multiple funds with one application. This one-stop-shop solicitation is the result of financial contributions from the U.S. Department of the Interior through the Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Forest Service, the U.S. Department of Defense, and Native Americans in Philanthropy, as well as private philanthropy.
The America the Beautiful Challenge seeks to advance conservation and restoration projects that are consistent with the principles outlined in the Conserving and Restoring America the Beautiful report and that focus on at least one of the following core areas of need:
- Conserving and restoring rivers, coasts, wetlands, and watersheds
- Conserving and restoring forests, grasslands, and other important ecosystems that serve as carbon sinks
- Connecting and reconnecting wildlife corridors, large landscapes, watersheds, and seascapes
- Improving ecosystem and community resilience to coastal flooding, drought, and other climate-related threats
- Expanding access to the outdoors, particularly in underserved communities
Applicants are encouraged to develop large landscape scale and/or cross jurisdictional projects that advance existing conservation plans or are informed by Indigenous Traditional Knowledge.