Cinnabar Foundation: Special Project Grants

Cinnabar Foundation

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Grant amount: Up to US $15,000

Anticipated deadline: Mar 31, 2020

Applicant type: Nonprofit College / University

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Research, Project / Program

Location of project: Montana, Counties in Idaho: Bannock County, Bear Lake County, Bingham County, Bonneville County Show all

Location of residency: United States

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About this funder:



The Cinnabar Foundation plays a unique role as Montana’s homegrown conservation fund. Recognizing that the challenges ahead loom large, we invite everyone to invest in a Montana conservation legacy that will live on in perpetuity. The Foundation’s permanent conservation fund is an ideal way to sustain and diversify your conservation investment through donations, bequests, legacy gifts and memorial funds. On behalf of future generations, thank you for investing in Montana’s future today.

We envision a future for Montana and its greater ecosystems that safeguards this landscape of promise, graced by generations of people with a commitment to preserve and conserve its clear waters, restored wildlife, wild lands, and epic national parks alongside sustainable economies.

Special Grants

Special Project Grants provide funding that enables an organization to carry out specific projects, programs and campaigns. 

Priority for Special Project Grants will be given to projects that align with the Cinnabar Foundation's priorities and advance the Foundation's strategic vision and conservation goals. The Cinnabar Foundation will only accept multi-year grant applications for a specific program, project or campaign that will take more than one-year to complete. 

The Cinnabar Foundation supports a wide variety of environmental organizations and special projects, but prioritizes funding to address conservation needs in the following categories:

  • Climate Action (natural resource extraction, renewable energy, reduction of greenhouse gases, climate adaptation)
  • Education and Research (conservation, environmental, species)
  • Environmental Advocacy (diverse statewide environmental issues)
  • Private Land Conservation (wildlife habitat, agricultural lands, open space)
  • Public Lands (access, advocacy, stewardship, wildlife habitat)
  • Sustainable Communities and Agriculture (community-based conservation initiatives, rangeland stewardship, watershed partnerships)
  • Water Quality and Fisheries

Applicants seeking Special Project support are advised that grant amounts will not exceed 50% of the total project budget, or $15,000, whichever is less.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Applicants must be established, well managed 501(c)(3) organizations — or have a 501(c)(3) fiscal agent.
  • Applicants must operate effective programs that serve Montana or the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
  • Organization must provide a 1:1 challenge match. 
    • An organization that is offered a Special Project Grant will be required to raise an equal amount of funding from other sources in order to claim its Cinnabar award.
  • Special Eligibility Requirements for multi-year grants: 
    • The Cinnabar Foundation will only accept multi-year grant applications for a specific program, project or campaign that will take more than one-year to complete.
    • Examples include — but are not limited to — a land acquisition or conservation easement project requiring more than one-year to consummate, a project with distinct multi-year phases, or a multi-year campaign to achieve an identifiable goal.
  • Applicants can apply for 1 grant per year. 


  • While every Special Project application will be considered on its own merits, the Cinnabar Foundation generally will not fund the following type of projects:
    • Capital Improvement (building construction, remodeling, etc.)
    • Community Gardens and Greenhouses
    • Equipment Purchases
    • Exhibits
    • Film Production, Brochure Publication, or Website Creation — unless the product is part of an overall campaign, or there is a defined marketing or distribution plan for the product
    • Projects Where Private Benefits Outweigh Public Benefits
    • Small Scale Vegetation Management Projects