Outdoor Gear Exchange Charitable Grant Fund
The Outdoor Gear Exchange Charitable Grant Fund's mission is to enhance outdoor recreation opportunities in Vermont communities by partnering with qualified organizations that focus on land conservation, land access, trail development and outdoor educational programming.
At Outdoor Gear Exchange, we believe access to and conservation of our natural landscapes is critical to the health of Vermont’s communities, many of which remain underserved and underfunded by traditional state services and educational entities. Our Charitable Grant Fund looks to provide resources to nonprofits aligned with our own vision for better outdoor access and education.
Through two annual grant cycles, the Charitable Grant Fund awards three to six organizations grants of up to $1,500. These grants are funded by customer donations through our consignment program, with Outdoor Gear Exchange then matching every dollar contributed towards our charitable giving efforts. Funds are preferentially provided for specific aspects of individual local projects.
Awardees are selected through an internal juried process looking to identify projects for which the grant will make the most positive impact.
We are thrilled about the number of applications that we receive during each grant cycle. We do ask, however, that your project meets this list of guidelines before you apply:
- The awarded grant will have a substantively positive financial impact for your organization, and be significant in bringing your project to completion.
- Your project will have a tangible, positive impact on our local recreational community.
- We preferentially support projects that provide infrastructural developments related to trail access or conservation. Examples include: Composting outhouses along the Northern Forest Canoe Trail, bridges on Fellowship of the Wheel mountain bike trails, and the establishment of a picnic area on the Mill Trail Property.
- For applicants with an education focus, we seek to fund public/non-profit educational programming that fosters an appreciation for the natural world and/or outdoor recreation.
Grant Cycle Timeline
The Outdoor Gear Exchange Charitable Grant Fund is divided into two cycles each year, with applications for the spring cycle being available from April 1st to May 1st and applications for the fall cycle being available from September 1st to October 1st.
Recipients of the Spring 2019 Grant Cycle
Cochran's Ski Area
The Grant Fund will support the development of a beginner and adaptive mountain bike friendly trail on Cochran's property.
Green Mountain Club
The Grant Fund will support the establishment of an expanded parking area at the Wheeler Pond trailhead, open to hikers, trail runners, and snowshoers.
Hinesburg Community School
The Grant Fund will support the purchase of climbing gear for their middle school climbing team.
King Street Center
The Grant Fund will support the purchase of required gear for six students from underserved communities to participate in the summer leadership programs at the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps.
Mad River Riders
The Grant Fund will support the construction of a new intermediate multi-use trail, the Butternut Hill Trail. This trail will be open to mountain bikers, hikers, snowshoers, and nordic skiers!
Recipients of the Fall 2018 Grant Cycle
Cross Vermont Trail Association
The OGE Charitable Grant Fund will support trail repairs on 650 feet of the Cross Vermont Trail in East Montpelier, including two bridges and the planting of native plants to repair damage left over from Hurricane Irene in 2011. This will enhance public access to trail-based recreation and the natural beauty of Vermont for many.
Fellowship of the Wheel
The OGE Charitable Grant Fund will support the construction of adaptive mountain bike-accessible bridges at the Sunny Hollow trail network. Once complete, the bridges will enable adaptive mountain bikers to enjoy an increased number of trails at Sunny Hollow.
Friends of Bolton Valley Nordic and Backcountry
The OGE Charitable Grant Fund will support the installation of two bridges on the Deer Run Trail in the Bolton Backcountry. This project will allow for sustainable increased access to popular winter and summer use trails for multiple recreational groups.
Grant Fund Archives
Since The Outdoor Gear Exchange Charitable Grant Fund's inception in 2013, we have granted over $48,000 to local non-profit organizations who share our goal of enhancing outdoor recreation opportunities for all Vermonters. Click the link below to learn more about our previous season's grant cycle awardees.