California Forests: Large Watershed Planning Grants 2024 Request for Proposals

Applicant Webinar [View Recording]: Tuesday, December 12, 2024 1:00 PM PST/4:00 PM EST
Pre-Proposal Due Date: Thursday, January 18th 2024 by 8:59 PM Pacific Daylight Time
Full Proposal Due Date: Wednesday, March 20th 2024 by 8:59 PM Pacific Daylight Time



Partnering with the Pacific Southwest Region of the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), is managing over $50 million for landscape-scale grants—encompassing up to 250,000 acres—to address comprehensive efforts to restore forest ecosystems.

NFWF, as the administrator of this grant funding, will accept Pre-Proposals for projects through Thursday, January 18, 2024, at 8:59 PM Pacific Time. All proposed projects must provide adequate information in accordance with the evaluation criteria outlined below. Pre-Proposals will be reviewed and evaluated as described below. Applicants whose Pre-Proposals are selected for further consideration will be asked to submit a Full Proposal for review. Funding awards will be made by NFWF to selected applicants for projects that best satisfy the evaluation criteria, as verified and approved by the U.S. Forest Service. Thereafter, NFWF will execute project funding agreements of up to 7 (seven) years with awardees that will implement the projects in accordance with the respective Full Proposals, applicable laws, and the terms and conditions of such project funding agreements with monies provided from this solicitation. 



Map of California Focus Areas

Areas of focus should include, but not be limited to, the following USFS lands and exhibit significant watershed and community benefits as a result of their work:

  • Mendocino National Forest – Watersheds impacted by the August Complex.
  • Shasta-Trinity National Forest – Watersheds impacted by the River Complex.
  • Six Rivers National Forest – Watersheds impacted by the Knob and McCash fires.
  • Lassen National Forest – Watersheds impacted by the Dixie Fire.
  • Eldorado National Forest – Watersheds impacted by the Caldor Fire.
  • Angeles National Forest – Watersheds within the San Gabriel Foothills
  • Klamath, Los Padres, and Inyo National Forests – Landscape-scale projects which protect communities within the wildland, urban interface and benefit the Klamath; Watersheds impacted by the Thomas Fire within the Ventura-San Gabriel Coastal area, and; Owens River watersheds respectively. 

Projects should contribute to the 2023 California Forests: Large Watershed Planning’s priorities as described above, the U.S. Forest Service Wildfire Crisis Strategy and NFWF’s California Forests and Watersheds business plan (Business Plan)



Ecological restoration and protection at a landscape scale requires a comprehensive approach that takes into account the interdependencies between water and fire. Applicants will have to exhibit their competency to manage not only funding, but also project activities across the landscape.  

The major goals of grants which will be awarded through this solicitation are to:

  1. Increase the pace and scale of restoration to address impacts to communities and watersheds from unnatural, high intensity wildfire events;
  2. Working closely with USFS and CAL FIRE to align large scale forest health projects;
  3. Plan for post-fire resilience and manage the risk of climate-driven hazards;
  4. Engage in inclusive community-driven process;
  5. Facilitate appropriate environmental compliance and permitting strategy to meet long-term objectives;
  6. Establish a transparent strategy and funding which will give organizational clarity on capacity needs and opportunities;
  7. Provide sustainable and lasting ecological benefits to the forests;
  8. Engage in efficient, strategic, and innovative solutions to develop and implement forest health and resilience projects;
  9. Encourage shared stewardship of USFS lands through expanded partnerships and cooperation;
  10. Increase the capacity to plan and implement prescribed fire to reduce hazardous fuel loads;
  11. Increase forest carbon storage capacity;
  12. Accelerate species recovery, protect biodiversity, decrease the rate of loss for sensitive species’ habitat, and reduce the footprint of invasive species, and;
  13. Incorporate monitoring to track species and habitat recovery.

Although not an exhaustive list, recipients of a landscape grant shall create resilient forests through: 

Fuels Management

  1. Prescribed Fire
  2. Treatment or removal of insect or disease-affected trees
  3. Manage and improve ecological resilience to future fire through invasive vegetation treatment, creating and maintaining fuel breaks, vegetation community age-class structure restoration, and strategic fuels reduction.

Forest and Upland Restoration and Management

  1. Evaluate forest ecosystems, such as oak woodlands, native grasslands, upland conifer, and chaparral and coastal sage scrub and develop effective treatment/restoration actions.
  2. Reforestation and Restoration of Forest Vegetation 
  3. Harvest native seed and/or propagate native plants, and maintain, improve, or restore native ecosystems communities and resilient landscapes.

Aquatic Organism Passage Improvements

  1. Improve hydrologic connectivity and aquatic organism passage through improvements to culverts and other transportation infrastructure or removal of other barriers
  2. Reduce sediment and other runoff-borne pollutants to streams;
  3. Restore and/or maintain natural flow and geomorphology, and;
  4. Create, maintain, or improve instream, riparian, or wetland habitat.
  5. Remove or reduce invasive species threatening aquatic habitat and/or listed species.

Working with the Forest Service

NFWF and the USFS welcome and encourage all proposals that meet the goals and priorities of this program. As this program solicits projects that will occur upon, and to the benefit of, USFS land, it is important to note that the USFS may have specific policies, protocols, and requirements related to some or all project activities that must be met before they can be executed. These requirements will differ depending on the project proposed. Examples of such incorporation may include explicit compliance with all pertinent laws and regulations (e.g., NEPA), integration of performance standards, adoption of specific best management practices or design standards (such as stated in the Land Management Plan and other USFS Management Documents), adherence to data deliverable/reporting formats, etc. In certain cases, not all requirements will be known at the time of application, however your proposal will benefit from identifying as many of these conditions as possible, in order to develop the most appropriate estimates of your project scope, timeline, and budget.

Please note, successful grant recipients are not considered volunteers to the Forest Service and are therefore not subject to Forest Service Volunteer Agreements and the benefits and restrictions those agreements provide. Grantees are ultimately responsible for the execution of their project and assume all legal liability for their actions and the well-being of their participants (which may themselves be volunteers to your organization/project).

NFWF acknowledges the many influencing factors that may affect project timelines and success, including occasional limitations to USFS staff availability, unpredictable and limiting weather and wildfire conditions, restrictive periods of operation, etc. Applicants should identify and understand potential factors and dependencies and prepare to adapt as needed to ensure project success.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the NFWF Western Regional Director, Jonathan Birdsong, prior to submitting your proposal to discuss ideas, seek relevant project-related information and contacts, and ensure applicability of project proposals with Program objectives and needs of NFWF and the USFS.

Proposals submitted to this RFP must respond to the program priorities associated with one of the 
targeted headwater resilience needs identified in the geographic focus section. Each project area has its own expectations, guidance and conditions. In addition, the proposals should describe how projects for which funds are requested will directly and measurably contribute to improved forest and watershed health, and the Business Plan.

The proposals should:

  • Present a vision of their landscape-scale project — encompassing up to 250,000 acres. 
  • Provide information on the organization’s capacity, sophistication and history in handling federal grants, several contractors, and summarize working relationships with federal and state agencies — particularly USFS and CAL FIRE. 
  • Showcase coordination with local implementors, Native American tribes, cooperatives and the private sector in addition to USFS and CAL FIRE in developing the landscape proposal.  
  • Include letters of support from Forest Supervisors representing forests within focal geographies. Proposal applicants who do not coordinate with Forest Service supervisors and senior line officers will not be considered. (Required at the full proposal stage.)

Funding in this solicitation is also dedicated to completing requisite environmental compliance materials. Projects should take into consideration environmental planning and compliance, including NEPA, CEQA, and other compliance components, to increase the pace and scale of this and future conservation efforts.   

Additional consideration will be given to well-planned, landscape-scale projects which emanate from USFS lands, align with CAL FIRE and/or California Regional Forest and Fire Capacity guidelines. Applicants who articulate a phased implementation strategy starting with projects that have environmental compliance completed, and a plan for phasing in other projects which are either contiguous or a part of a connected watershed, upon requisite planning and permitting, will be strongly considered.

In addition, projects that incorporate outreach to communities, foster community engagement, and pursue collaborative management leading to measurable conservation benefits are encouraged. When possible, projects should be developed through community input and co-design processes ensuring traditional knowledge elevation. Additionally, projects should engage community-level partners (e.g., municipalities, NGOs, community organizations, community leaders) to help design, implement, and maintain projects to secure maximum benefits for communities, maintenance, and sustainability post-grant award. 



To better gauge progress on individual grants and to ensure greater consistency of project data provided by multiple grants, the California Forests Program has a list of metrics in Easygrants for full proposal applicants to choose from for future reporting. We ask that applicants select only the most relevant metrics from this list for their project (all possible program metrics are shown in the table below).  If you think an applicable metric has not been provided, please contact Jonathan Birdsong to discuss acceptable alternatives.

Funding Strategy Recommended Metric Additional Guidance
Habitat Restoration Erosion control - Lbs sediment avoided Enter the amount of sediment prevented from entering system annually
Habitat Restoration Fish passage improvements - # of barriers assessed and/or with design plans Enter the # of in-stream barriers with assessments or engineering/design plans completed in this grant. In the notes, provide the barrier's SARP ID ( If the barrier(s) is not in SARP, provide its lat/long or its name and source.
Habitat Restoration Fish passage improvements - # passage barriers rectified Enter the # of in-stream barriers removed/rectified in THIS grant. In the notes, provide the barrier's SARP ID--see SARP Natl. Aq. Barrier Inventory ( If the barrier(s) is not in SARP, provide its lat/long or its name and source.
Habitat Restoration Fish passage improvements - Miles of stream opened Enter total # of miles opened to improve aquatic organism passage. Only include the miles of main stem & smaller tributaries connected until the next barrier upstream (or headwaters), but NOT lakes, ponds, or distance downstream from the barrier removed. 
Habitat Restoration Instream restoration - # structures installed Enter the number of habitat structures installed, replaced, upgraded or repaired for improvement of instream habitat
Habitat Restoration Instream restoration - Miles restored Enter the number of miles restored
Habitat Restoration Land restoration - Acres of trees planted Enter # acres of TREES planted. In the NOTES, specify landcover type prior to planting (barren, cropland, grassland, shrubland), average # of trees per acre planted, and forest type (broadleaf, conifer, redwood, swamp--either broadleaf or conifer, shrub).
Habitat Restoration Land restoration - Acres restored Enter # acres of habitat restored. In the NOTES, specify landcover prior to restoration (barren, cropland, grass, shrub) and post-restoration (broadleaf, conifer, redwood, grassland, shrubland, marsh, wet meadow, tidal marsh, swamp, seagrass, kelp forest)
Habitat Restoration Land, wetland restoration - # acres returned to desired forest condition Enter the # acres returned to desired forest condition
Habitat Restoration Plant cultivation - # seedlings propagated Please enter the number of seedlings propagated
Habitat Restoration Removal of infected individuals - Acres restored Enter the number of acres restored
Habitat Restoration Removal of invasives - Acres restored Enter # acres of invasives removed. In the NOTES, specify: vegetation removed (see list), desired dominant vegetation (see list), average frequency (in years) of future treatment, and whether removed vegetation will be left on site to decompose (Yes/No).
Habitat Restoration Riparian restoration - Acres restored Enter the number of acres restored
Habitat Restoration Seed harvesting - lbs harvested Enter the number of pounds of seeds collected.
Habitat Restoration Wetland restoration - Acres restored Enter # acres of non-tidal freshwater WETLAND (not riparian or instream) habitat restored. In the NOTES, specify landcover before restoration (Marsh, Wet meadow, Swamp) and % of vegetation on pre-project site (0-20%, 21-40%, 41-60%, 61-80%, 81-100%).
Habitat Management BMP implementation for prescribed burns - Acres burned Enter # acres with prescribed burning. In the NOTES, specify if private or public land, average frequency (in yrs) for future burning, dominant vegetation burned (list). If forest, note if trees were planted in past 10 yrs (Yes/No) & type of forest (list)
Habitat Management California Spotted Owl - BMP implementation for prescribed burns - Acres burned Enter # acres with prescribed burning. In the NOTES, specify if private or public land, average frequency (in yrs) for future burning, dominant vegetation burned (list). If forest, note if trees were planted in past 10 yrs (Yes/No) & type of forest (list)
Habitat Management Fisher - BMP implementation for prescribed burns - Acres burned Enter # acres with prescribed burning. In the NOTES, specify if private or public land, average frequency (in yrs) for future burning, dominant vegetation burned (list). If forest, note if trees were planted in past 10 yrs (Yes/No) & type of forest (list)
Habitat Management Northern Spotted Owl - BMP implementation for prescribed burns - Acres burned Enter # acres with prescribed burning. In the NOTES, specify if private or public land, average frequency (in yrs) for future burning, dominant vegetation burned (list). If forest, note if trees were planted in past 10 yrs (Yes/No) & type of forest (list)
Habitat Management BMP implementation for road improvements - Miles of road improved Enter the number of miles of roads improved, maintained, or decommissioned. In the notes, state the BMP type(s) and expected environmental benefits.
Habitat Management California Spotted Owl - Fuels management treatment (mechanical/hand) - # of acres treated Enter # acres of vegetation treated by mechanical or hand treatments for the benefit of California spotted owl. In the NOTES, indicate dominant forest type (see list), average frequency (in yrs) for future treatments, and whether the removed vegetation will be left on site to decompose (Yes/No).
Habitat Management Fisher - Fuels management treatment (mechanical/hand) - # of acres treated Enter # acres of vegetation treated by mechanical or hand treatments for the benefit of Pacific fisher. In the NOTES, indicate dominant forest type (see list), average frequency (in yrs) for future treatments, and whether the removed vegetation will be left on site to decompose (Yes/No).
Habitat Management Fuels management treatment (mechanical/hand) - # of acres treated Enter # acres of vegetation treated by mechanical or hand treatments. In the NOTES, indicate dominant forest type (see list), average frequency (in yrs) for future treatments, and whether the removed vegetation will be left on site to decompose (Yes/No).
Habitat Management Northern Spotted Owl - Fuels management treatment (mechanical/hand) - # of acres treated Enter # acres of vegetation treated by mechanical or hand treatments. In the NOTES, indicate dominant forest type (see list), average frequency (in yrs) for future treatments, and whether the removed vegetation will be left on site to decompose (Yes/No).
Capacity, Outreach, Incentives Outreach/ Education/ Technical Assistance - # people reached Enter the number of people reached by outreach, training, or technical assistance activities
Capacity, Outreach, Incentives Volunteer participation - # volunteers participating Enter the number of volunteers participating in projects
Species-specific Strategies Invasive animal or predator removal - # of individuals removed Enter the # of individual barred owls removed
Planning, Research, Monitoring Research - # studies used to inform mgmt Enter the number of studies completed whose findings are used to adapt management/ inform mgmt decisions
Planning, Research, Monitoring Research - Acres assessed Enter the number of acres assessed for improved management
Planning, Research, Monitoring Restoration planning/design/permitting - # E&D plans developed Enter the number of Engineering and Design plans developed. Generally there will be 1 plan per project to be constructed.  




Eligible and Ineligible Entities

  • Eligible applicants include non-profit organizations, state agencies, local/municipal agencies, and tribal governments and organizations.
  • Ineligible applicants include federal agencies, international organizations, for-profit businesses, and unincorporated individuals.

Ineligible Uses of Grant FundsCalifornia

  • Equipment: Applicants are encouraged to rent equipment where possible and cost-effective or use matching funds to make those purchases. NFWF acknowledges, however, that some projects may only be completed using NFWF funds to procure equipment. If this applies to your project, please contact the program staff listed in this RFP to discuss options.
  • Federal funds and matching contributions may not be used to procure or obtain equipment, services, or systems (including entering into or renewing a contract) that uses telecommunications equipment or services produced by Huawei Technologies Company or ZTE Corporation (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities) as a substantial or essential component, or as critical technology of any system. Refer to Public Law 115-232, section 889 for additional information. NFWF funds and matching contributions may not be used to support political advocacy, fundraising, lobbying, litigation, terrorist activities or Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations.
  • NFWF funds may not be used to support ongoing efforts to comply with legal requirements, including permit conditions, mitigation and settlement agreements. However, grant funds may be used to support projects that enhance or improve upon existing baseline compliance efforts. 

The California Forests Program will award approximately $50 million in grants in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). NFWF expects that average awards for projects will range between $5 million and $15 million. Projects may extend from 5 to 7 years.

Projects must have a minimum match of 20% non-federal cash or in-kind contributions. While federal contributions cannot be used as match, all potential sources contributions, including federal, should be listed in the application for consideration during the review process.

All pre-proposals will be screened for relevance, accuracy, completeness and compliance with NFWF and funding source policies. Proposals will then be evaluated based on the extent to which they meet the following criteria:

Program Goals and Priorities – Project contributes to the Program’s overall habitat and species conservation goals, and has specific, quantifiable performance metrics to evaluate project success. Project addresses one or more of the program priorities.

Technical Merit – Project is technically sound and feasible, and the proposal sets forth a clear, logical and achievable work plan and timeline. Project engages appropriate technical experts throughout project planning, design and implementation to ensure activities are technically-sound and feasible.

Partnership and Community Impact – The applicant organization partners and engages collaboratively with diverse local community members, leaders, community-based organizations, and other relevant stakeholders to develop and implement the proposed project. This ensures long-term sustainability and success of the project, integration into local programs and policies, and community acceptance of proposed restoration actions. Non-traditional partners or communities are enlisted to broaden the sustained impact from the project. Describe the community characteristics of the project area, identify any communities impacted, describe outreach and community engagement activities and how those will be monitored and measured. Use demographic data to support descriptions and submit letters of support from community partners and/or collaborators demonstrating their commitment to the project and engagement in project activities as proposed.

Cost-Effectiveness – Cost-effectiveness analysis identifies the economically most efficient way to meet project objectives. Project includes a cost-effective budget that balances performance risk and efficient use of funds. Cost-effectiveness evaluation includes, but is not limited to, an assessment of effective direct/indirect costs across all categories in the proposed budget according to the type, size and duration of project and project objectives. Project budgets will be compared to similar projects to ensure proposed costs across all budget categories are reasonable for the activities being performed and the outcomes proposed.

Transferability – Project has potential and plan to transfer lessons learned to other communities and/or to be integrated into government programs and policies.

Communication – Project includes a detailed plan to communicate information about the project to appropriate audiences.

Funding Need – Project establishes a clear need for the funds being requested, and demonstrates that activities would not move forward absent funding.

Conservation Plan and Context – The project advances an existing conservation plan or strategy. 

Monitoring – Project includes a plan for monitoring progress during and after the proposed project period to track project success and adaptively address new challenges and opportunities as they arise. 

Long-term Sustainability – Project will be maintained to ensure benefits are achieved and sustained over time. This should include how future funding will be secured to implement necessary long-term monitoring and maintenance activities.

Past Success – Applicant has a proven track record of success in implementing conservation practices with specific, measurable results.

Partnership – An appropriate partnership exists to implement the project and the project is supported by a strong local partnership that leverages additional funds and will sustain it after the life of the grant. Identify proposed partners, if known (including potential or contemplated subawards to third party subrecipients of the applicant), the roles they will play in implementing the project, and how this project will build new or enhance existing partnerships.  (Note: a project partner is any local community, non-profit organization, tribe, and/or local, state, and federal government agency that contributes to the project in a substantial way and is closely involved in the completion of the project.)


Applicant Demographic Information – In an effort to better understand diversity in our grantmaking, NFWF is collecting basic demographic information on applicants and their organizations via a voluntary survey form (available in Easygrants). This information will not be shared externally or with reviewers and will not be considered when making grant decisions. For more details, please see the tip sheet and the Uploads section of Easygrants.

Budget – Costs are allowable, reasonable and budgeted in accordance with NFWF’s Budget Instructions cost categories. Federally-funded projects must be in compliance with OMB Uniform Guidance as applicable.

Environmental Services – NFWF funds projects in pursuit of its mission to sustain, restore and enhance the nation's fish, wildlife, plants and habitats for current and future generations. NFWF recognizes that some benefits from projects may be of value with regards to credits on an environmental services market (such as a carbon credit market). NFWF does not participate in, facilitate, or manage an environmental services market nor does NFWF assert any claim on such credits. 

Intellectual Property – Intellectual property created using NFWF awards may be copyrighted or otherwise legally protected by award recipients. NFWF may reserve the right to use, publish, and copy materials created under awards, including posting such material on NFWF’s website and featuring it in publications. NFWF may use project metrics and spatial data from awards to estimate societal benefits that result and to report these results to funding partners. These may include but are not limited to: habitat and species response, species connectivity, water quality, water quantity, risk of detrimental events (e.g., wildfire, floods), carbon accounting (e.g., sequestration, avoided emissions), environmental justice, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

Matching Contributions – Matching Contributions consist of cash, contributed goods and services, volunteer hours, and/or property raised and spent for the Project during the Period of Performance. Larger match ratios and matching fund contributions from a diversity of partners are encouraged and will be more competitive during application review.

Procurement – If the applicant chooses to specifically identify proposed Contractor(s) for Services, an award by NFWF to the applicant does not constitute NFWF’s express written authorization for the applicant to procure such specific services noncompetitively.  When procuring goods and services, NFWF recipients must follow documented procurement procedures which reflect applicable laws and regulations.  

Publicity and Acknowledgement of Support – Award recipients will be required to grant NFWF the right and authority to publicize the project and NFWF’s financial support for the grant in press releases, publications and other public communications.  Recipients may also be asked by NFWF to provide high-resolution (minimum 300 dpi) photographs depicting the project.

Receiving Award Funds – Award payments are primarily reimbursable.  Projects may request funds for reimbursement at any time after completing a signed agreement with NFWF.  A request of an advance of funds must be due to an imminent need of expenditure and must detail how the funds will be used and provide justification and a timeline for expected disbursement of these funds.

Compliance Requirements – Projects selected may be subject to requirements under the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act (state and federal), and National Historic Preservation Act.  Documentation of compliance with these regulations must be approved prior to initiating activities that disturb or alter habitat or other features of the project site(s).  Applicants should budget time and resources to obtain the needed approvals.  As may be applicable, successful applicants may be required to comply with additional Federal, state or local requirements and obtain all necessary permits and clearances.

Quality Assurance – If a project involves significant monitoring, data collection or data use, grantees will be asked to prepare and submit quality assurance documentation (  Applicants should budget time and resources to complete this task.

Permits – Successful applicants will be required to provide sufficient documentation that the project expects to receive or has received all necessary permits and clearances to comply with any Federal, state or local requirements.  Where projects involve work in the waters of the United States, NFWF strongly encourages applicants to conduct a permit pre-application meeting with the Army Corps of Engineers prior to submitting their proposal.  In some cases, if a permit pre-application meeting has not been completed, NFWF may require successful applicants to complete such a meeting prior to grant award.

Federal Funding – The availability of federal funds estimated in this solicitation is contingent upon the federal appropriations process. Funding decisions will be made based on level of funding and timing of when it is received by NFWF.


Dates of activities are subject to change. Please check the program page of the NFWF website for the most current dates and information – Northern California Forests and Watersheds

Applicant Webinar [View Recording] Tuesday December 12th, 2024 at 1:00pm PST/4:00pm EST
Pre-Proposal Due Date Thursday, January 18th, 2024 at 1:00pm PST/4:00pm EST
Invitations for Full Proposals Sent Mid-February 
Full Proposal Due Date Wednesday, March 20th 2024 by 8:59pm PDT
Review Period     April 2024
Awards Announced Spring 2024


All application materials must be submitted online through National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Easygrants system.

  1. Go to to register in our Easygrants online system. New users to the system will be prompted to register before starting the application (if you already are a registered user, use your existing login). Enter your applicant information. Please disable the pop-up blocker on your internet browser prior to beginning the application process.
  2. Once on your homepage, click the “Apply for Funding” button and select this RFP’s “Funding Opportunity” from the list of options.
  3. Follow the instructions in Easygrants to complete your application. Once an application has been started, it may be saved and returned to at a later time for completion and submission.

A Tip Sheet is available for quick reference while you are working through your application. This document can be downloaded here

Additional information to support the application process can be accessed on the NFWF website’s Applicant Information page.

For more information or questions about this RFP, please contact: 

Jonathan Birdsong, Director, Western Region
Email:; Phone: 415-243-3101

Jorge Nunez, Manager, Western Regional Forests

Eddie Peabody, Program Coordinator, Western Regional Office
Email:; Phone: 202-595-2674

For issues or assistance with our online Easygrants system, please contact:
Easygrants Helpdesk
Voicemail: 202-595-2497Hours:  9:00 am to 5:00 pm ET, Monday-Friday. 
Include:  your name, proposal ID #, e-mail address, phone number, program you are applying to, and a description of the issue.