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2024 Virginia Wildlife Grant Program Application Guidance

Grant submission period: January 1 – February 1, 2024

Year 2024 will be the 10th year of the Virginia Wildlife Grant Program which connects people to the outdoors. In the past 10 years, nearly 245 projects have been supported at $730,000 and have connected over 70,000 participants to the outdoors! See more details at the Virginia Wildlife Grant Program page.


In October 2010, the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) and the Wildlife Foundation of Virginia (WFV) created a mutually-beneficial relationship for the purpose of developing new or enhanced fundraising projects and managing funds to implement projects which aligned with the missions of the DWR and the WFV.

Funds to support the Virginia Wildlife Grant program include:

Grant Focus Areas

Through this grant, DWR and WFV are connecting participants to the outdoors through the recruitment and retention into outdoor activities from new audiences (IE: urban, underrepresented communities, etc.). “Recruitment” is creating awareness and interest in an outdoor activity and most importantly, providing a first-time or trial experience of that activity. “Retention” is defined as efforts or programs that will support and encourage participants to continue in an outdoor activity in which they are currently engaged. Effective recruitment and retention efforts provide participants with learning experiences to increase their interest and participation in the outdoor activity. By providing support and opportunities to overcome barriers and learn new skills, participants will gain confidence to continue the activity even after the program is completed. DWR Recruitment and Retention Strategies can be referenced on this website. The DWR R3 Plan is part of an overall national initiative at most state fish and wildlife agencies.


The Virginia Wildlife Grant Program will prioritize the following opportunities:

2024 Eligible Applicants

  • Colleges/Universities (2 & 4 year)
  • Nonprofit and/or Charitable Organizations

2024 Award Amount Range

  •  $10,000 – $20,000 (applications for amounts outside of this range will be considered on a limited basis)

Recruitment/Retention Program Eligibility

  • Your program recruits or retains participants in one or more of the following eligible activities:
    • Archery
    • Boating
    • Fishing
    • Hunting
    • Recreational Shooting (firearms)
    • Wildlife Viewing – please reference the DWR Wildlife Viewing Plan
  • The activity program period is from March 1, 2024 – December 1, 2024
  • All grantees will be required to sign a grant agreement

Grant Application Content Requirements – online submission is required

Please review the DWR R3 Strategic Plan, Virginia Wildlife Viewing Plan, and Inclusive Excellence Strategic Plan.

  • Select your primary activity which is related to your budget and gear purchases.  You may be buying a kayak (boating) but if most of your budget funds will be used to purchase fishing gear then fishing is your primary activity 
  • Projected Number of Participants 
  • Age Range of Participants 
  • Program description and activities – include how program will address the focus areas and include program goals which are broad statements about the long-term expectation of what should happen as a result of your program 
  • Objectives – specify the intended effect of the program in the target population or end result of a program. The outcome objective focuses on what your target population(s) will know or will be able to do as a result of your program/activity.  
  • List of Community Partners and their contributions 

Allowable Expenses

  • All grant purchases will include outdoor gear and equipment related to the eligible tasks (rods and reels, firearms, ammunition, binoculars, field guides, etc.)
  • Transportation needs
  • Instructor support to provide expertise related to the outdoor activity (to include trainings or licensure for current staff)

Non-Allowable Expenses

  • T-shirts, refreshments, prizes, raffles, or other items not directly related to the activity
  • Staff Salaries

Disbursement of Funds

  • The WFV shall disburse 100% of the funds to Grantee when the award is accepted
  • Checks must be deposited within 30 days of receipt

Grant Timeline

  • Application Submission Deadline: February 1, 2024
  • Application Review and Award Announcement: February 2024
  • Grant Agreement Signed: within 15 days of award notification
  • Check Deposit: March 2024 (or within 30 days of receipt)
  • Project Completion: December 1, 2024
  • Final Report: December 1, 2024


The DWR contact is Kelsey Steenburgh (

Submit a Grant Application