The Mad River Valley Recreation District (MRVRD) is now accepting applications for this year’s grant cycle. The mission of the Mad River Valley Recreation District is to “facilitate, enhance and create recreational opportunities throughout the Mad River Valley that promote community vitality, physical fitness, appreciation for the outdoors and a high quality of life.”
Funded annually by the towns of Warren, Waitsfield and Fayston, the recreation district’s grant program provides funding for a wide range of initiatives that support and enhance recreation in the Mad River Valley. Grant applications are due by November 1, 2021. Forms, instructions and information on the grant process can be found on the MRVRD website, http://www.mrvrd.org/
A big part of the work done by the Mad River Valley Recreation District is managing the recreation grant program for nonprofits, municipalities and citizen groups provided there is a demonstrated plan for completion or any ongoing maintenance or operational needs to sustain the project. Rec district board members will consider projects, programs, materials or facilities that contribute to public recreation in the Mad River Valley. The board will review proposals and meet with applicants in December 2021 and then announce grant awards in late January 2022.
In 2021, MRVRD grant amounts ranged from $600 to $5,960 and funded initiatives as diverse as event sponsorship, youth sports, field enhancements and trail development and maintenance. While many local nonprofit recreation partners seek funding every year, the recreation district also seeks innovative proposals that diversify recreation opportunities and benefit under-served demographic groups. In 2021, funding requests totaled more than $80,000, and a total of $46,458 in grants were awarded to 12 partners along with funding Mad River Park. Grant decisions are based on the following criteria: economic benefits; the benefit and impact to the community across user groups; the number of people served; project sustainability and fundraising; and the length of the investment.
“Use of public parks, trails and other outdoor recreation assets increased dramatically during the pandemic and we anticipate that trend to continue as we come out of the pandemic. We look closely at every request and encourage established nonprofits as well as start-ups to develop recreational plans that benefit our community,” said Laura Arnesen, MRVRD executive director.
“Many of our partners made great strides during 2021 and it was exciting to be part of that. It was the first time we sponsored the Mad Marathon Relays, stewardMRV, the Bill Koch League and a Wilderness First Aid workshop,” continued Arnesen.