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Protect Initiative Grants

GOCO's Protect Initiative funds urgent, once-in-a-lifetime land conservation projects. Projects may range from conservation of an urban parcel to a ranch that encompasses tens of thousands of acres, but all must present a compelling urgency, involve significant size and/or cost, and be accessible and/or visible to the public. The minimum request for GOCO funding of these projects is $1 million. Multiple-parcel or phased projects may be considered but will be limited with regard to substitutions of properties and extensions of grants. Read about the most recent round of funding awarded >> 

Who can apply

Non-profit land-conservation organizations, municipalities, counties, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and political subdivisions of the State of Colorado that include in their mission the identification, acquisition, or management of open space and natural areas are eligible for this grant program.

how to apply

  • Call Open Space Program Manager Michele Frishman at 303-226-4522 to determine your project's eligibility and whether it will be competitive. 
  • To apply, you must first submit a concept paper in the required format to Michele Frishman at mfrishman@goco.org. (See the Request for Concept Papers below.)

If you have more than one project in mind, please submit a separate concept paper for each project.

Please keep in mind that a concept paper does not constitute a grant application. GOCO staff and peer reviewers will review your concept paper, and staff will present eligible concept papers to the GOCO Board. GOCO staff may determine that your project does not present sufficient urgency to receive funding in a particular cycle and may recommend submitting an updated concept paper in a later cycle. Selected eligible applicants will receive a formal, invitation-only application, and a site visit will be scheduled.

Feel free to contact us at any point during the completion of your concept paper and application. We are always willing and happy to assist you.


when to apply

  • April 28, 2017:  Draft applications due (optional)
  • May 12, 2017: Final applications due via online portal
  • June 15, 2017: Grants awarded at the GOCO Board Meeting in Alamosa


Contact Michele Frishman, Open Space Program Manager, at (303) 226-4522 or mfrishman@goco.org