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 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.
Recipients of the Spring 2018 Grant Cycle
Richmond Mountain Trails
The Grant Fund will support the development of two new trails on the Whitman Property in Richmond, increasing outdoor recreation opportunities for hikers, runners, and mountain bikers.
The Grant Fund will support the installation of secure bike parking on Intervale grounds, improving access to local trails and encouraging more members of our local community to explore Burlington's unique natural areas.
Middlebury Area Land Trust
The Grant Fund will support the purchase of materials for improvements to be made on the Trail Around Middlebury, an important community trail that allows for residents of Middlebury and beyond to experience the natural world and promotes participation in outdoor recreation.
South Hero Land Trust
The Grant Fund will support the completion of the Folsom Outdoor Classroom. This project will help the youth of Vermont to develop a relationship with the nature, and encourage the public to engage with the outdoors.
Vermont Huts Association
The Grant Fund will support the construction of an ADA-accessible ramp for the Chittenden Brook Hut, allowing for increased access to the outdoors for those with physical disabilities.
Bristol Recreation Club
The Grant Fund will support the construction of a pump track on Airport Drive adjacent to Mount Abraham Union High School. This project will enable people in several age groups to try mountain biking in a fun and safe environment.
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.