Nominations for the first round of funding given out by the Adventure Travel Conservation Fund (ATCF), an adventure travel industry nonprofit organization, are due on Wednesday, 10 May. Member organizations are encouraged to submit projects worthy of financial support, setting the bar and tone for future funding opportunities.
For a long time, many international organizations in the adventure travel and outdoor industries have been looking for a way to engage in conservation efforts that protect the destinations where they work and play. Founded less than a year ago, the ATCF is structured in a way to make the process for soliciting the best possible conservation projects, vetting the projects, funding the projects, and monitoring and measuring impact of these projects as easy and straightforward as possible.
The ATCF relies on member companies to identify projects conducting relevant and important work that meet funding criteria. Because this will be ATCF’s first time awarding supporting funds, there are no pre-conceived constructs about what defines a “successful” or “worthy” project, so members are in a unique position to be creative and forthcoming with their nominations to help shape ATCF’s future.
“We’re thrilled at the Adventure Travel Trade Association to be one of the founding members of the ATCF, and our team is having fun putting forth ideas for projects to nominate,” said Shannon Stowell, president of the ATTA. “It’s exciting to see the industry taking concrete actions to preserve the places we love and assist the locals who are getting it done!”
Member organizations may nominate up to two projects for funding consideration. Once the deadline for project nominations closes on 10 May 2017, the ATCF will contact each of the organizations that were nominated with a full application packet and invite them to submit a grant request. These organizations will have until mid-June to complete and submit their RFP project application to the ATCF.
Project nominations close May 10! Not sure what to nominate? Check out these ATTA member projects for examples of the types of projects that could be funded.
“REI Adventures is honored to be an ATCF founding member, and we are excited for this first round of project funding.” said Cynthia Dunbar, general manager of REI Adventures and an ATCF board member. “We are all businesses that depend on the world’s global treasures. It’s important we invest in the future of the cultural and natural resources of our most popular, fragile, and threatened destinations.”
To nominate a project, ATCF members should complete the quick and easy nomination form by 10 May. Projects may only be nominated by ATCF members. Organizations that would like to nominate a project for 2017 funding, but are not yet members of the ATCF are encouraged to sign up for membership as soon as possible. “If you have not yet joined the ATCF, I encourage you to act now,” Dunbar said. “To make the kind of impact we are capable of, we need the voice and inspiration of all businesses in the adventure travel industry. Together, we can be a force for good and truly have a positive impact in conserving these places for future generations.”
After nominations close on Wednesday, proposals for project funding will be due 15 June. Voting ballots will be circulated to members in September of this year, and grant winners will be announced in October.