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Delaware Watershed Conservation Fund (DWCF) Conservation Action Grant

Grants to USA Nonprofits, Agencies, and IHEs in
Multiple States to Enhance the Local Watershed

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) - Delaware River Program

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

04/01/21 11:59 PM ET


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Grants to New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware nonprofit organizations, government agencies, tribes, and educational institutions for environmental improvement projects in the local watershed. Funding is intended for the rehabilitation and conservation of natural areas, corridors, and waterways that support native fish, wildlife and plants, and to contribute to the vitality of the communities in the Delaware River watershed. All Delaware River Program projects must be implemented entirely within the Delaware River watershed, which includes portions of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. Organizations located outside the watershed may apply if the project will be conducted entirely within the watershed.

DWCF Conservation Action Grants will be awarded to implement on-the-ground restoration and conservation projects that achieve the goals of the Delaware River Basin Restoration Partnership and Program Framework to: sustain and enhance fish and wildlife habitat; improve and maintain water quality for fish, wildlife and people; sustain and enhance water management to benefit fish and wildlife; and improve outdoor recreational opportunities. To address these goals, projects, which may be located anywhere within the Delaware River watershed, must employ one or more of the strategies described in the Program Priorities section below.

Priority for Conservation Action Grants will be given to projects that collaboratively address one or more of the following Strategic Program Areas.

  1. Strategic Program Area 1: Sustain and Enhance Fish and Wildlife Habitat Restoration and Conservation Activities
  2. Strategic Program Area 2: Improve and Maintain Water Quality to Support Fish and Wildlife, as well as Habitats for Fish and Wildlife and Drinking Water for People. 
  3. Strategic Program Area 3: Sustain and Enhance Water Resource Management for Volume and Flood Damage Mitigation Improvements to Benefit Fish and Wildlife Habitat. 
  4. Strategic Program Area 4: Improve Opportunities for Public Access and Recreation in the Basin Consistent with the Ecological Needs of Fish and Wildlife Habitat.

DWCF Incubation and Investment Grants

  • NFWF is making available funding for projects that enable the DWCF to support high-performing science and innovation concepts. Projects should have significant potential to transform the Delaware River watershed's future in areas including conservation and restoration action, diversity and inclusion, and public access.
  • Incubation and Investment Grants will be awarded to projects that address cross cutting issues that are barriers to, or represent unique opportunities for, accelerating habitat improvement for fish, wildlife and people in the Delaware River watershed. For example, grants may support innovative methods and new technologies to drive down implementation costs, ensure the effectiveness and continual improvement of conservation and restoration practices, and enhance community engagement and experience in nature.
  • Projects should seek to build proof of concept and are strongly encouraged to include assessment and evaluation to draw meaningful conclusions about efficacy and to include robust documentation of results to enhance transferability and utility.

For more information about the project priorities, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 179400

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

DWCF Conservation Action Grants will range from $75,000 to $750,000 each.

Term of Contract:

Projects must be ready to begin implementation within six months of the grant award, and completed within two years of grant award.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

DWCF Conservation Action Grants:
- Eligible applicants include: non-profit 501(c) organizations; federal, state, interstate, local and municipal governments, Tribal governments and organizations, and educational institutions
- Ineligible applicants include: unincorporated individuals, businesses, and international organizations

Ineligible Uses of Grant Funds:
- 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, compensatory mitigation and settlement agreements. However, grant funds may be used to support projects that enhance or improve upon baseline legal and permit compliance efforts.
- 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.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Applicant Webinar: Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, 11:00AM, EST
- Register at:

Proposal Tools Webinar: Friday, Feb. 19, 2021, 10:00AM, EST
- Register at:

Pre-Application Information:

- Full Proposal Due Date: April 1, 2021, 11:59pm, EST
- Review Period: April – May 2021
- Awards Announced: Mid-August, 2021

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

For DWCF Conservation Action Grants, a minimum match of 1:1 non-federal cash and/or in-kind contributions is required. Larger match ratios and matching fund contributions from a diversity of partners are encouraged and will be more competitive. Should an applicant encounter significant challenges meeting the 1:1 nonfederal requirement, they are encouraged to contact NFWF or FWS program staff to discuss options.


Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Register and apply online:

For more information or questions about this RFP, please contact:
Rachel Dawson – Program Director, Delaware River
(202) 595-2643

Claire Flynn – Manager, Northeastern Region
(202) 595-2449

Erin Lewis – Coordinator, Northeast Regional Programs
(202) 595-2413

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
1133 Fifteenth St., N.W., Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20005

Grant Coverage Areas:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Delaware;   New Jersey;   New York;   Pennsylvania

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