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How the Community Forest Program Works

Photo by Steve Neel.

Community forests expand recreation opportunities. Photo by Janet Valle

Community forests expand recreation opportunities. Photo by Janet Valle

Community forests provide educational opportunities. Photo by Margee Haines

Community forests provide educational opportunities. Photo by Margee Haines

The Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (Community Forest Program) of the Forest Service offers a unique opportunity for communities to acquire and conserve forests that provide public access and recreational opportunities, protect vital water supplies and wildlife habitat, serve as demonstration sites for private forest landowners, and provide economic benefits from timber and non-timber products.

Program Basics

  • Full fee title acquisition is required. Conservation easements are not eligible.
  • Community Forests can be owned by local governments, tribal governments, and qualified nonprofit entities.
  • The program pays up to 50% of the project costs and requires a 50% non-federal match.
  • Public access is required for Community Forest Program projects.
  • Lands acquired through the program are actively managed in accordance with a community forest plan to provide community benefits.

How to Apply

The Forest Service publishes an annual request for applications for the CFP in the Federal Register. Applications are encouraged from across the country.

If you are interested in applying, contact your CFP Regional Contact. For complete information on the program and application process, see the new Community Forest Road Map a resource for potential program applicants or grant recipients.

Applications are due to State Foresters or equivalent Tribal officials by June 29, 2018.

Community Forest Program Summary Map

Community Forest Program Summary Map

National Contact

Scott Stewart
Forest Legacy Program Manager & Community Forest Program Manager
(202) 205-1618
sstewart@fs.fed.us

Email questions or comments to communityforest@fs.fed.us

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