Building a fence at Grand Teton

2018 National Public Lands Day Department of Defense Awards

In commemoration of this year's National Public Lands Day, the Department of Defense, through the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Energy, Installations, and Environment and the Natural Resources Program, will fund NPLD projects on military lands that are open to the public for recreation. The 2018 NPLD DoD Awards will provide up to $9,500 to selected installations to implement natural and cultural resources management, restoration, and/or enhancement projects on or around this year's National Public Lands Day on September 22, 2018. This year's applicants are encouraged to implement projects that impact resources related to and in celebration of the 100th anniversaries of Armistice Day and/or the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Applicants are also encouraged to implement projects that contribute to the restoration and resiliency of DoD lands. Applications for the 2018 NPLD DoD Awards are due by 11:59pm (EST) on Monday, July 30, 2018.

Before you apply, please take a moment to review the award details below.

I. Eligibility and Criteria for Selection

Applicants must be:

  • a Department of Defense installation site that is open to the public for recreation, including lands managed by the US Army, Air Force, Marine Corps, National Guard, or Navy. Lands managed by the US Army Corps of Engineers are not eligible for Award funds;

  • registered for National Public Lands Day.

Applicants must propose a project that:

  • takes place on September 22nd (project dates that take place 2 weeks prior and 2 weeks post NPLD are acceptable);
  • all aspects of projects should be completed by December 1, 2018 at the latest;
  • engages a variety of volunteers and creates a positive experience for them;
  • improves, enhances, or restores natural and/or cultural resources on the DoD installation site;
  • involves or benefits the broader community;
  • promotes a stewardship ethic among participants via project-relevant environmental education and community opportunities;
  • presents an appropriate and detailed buget.

In addition:

  • For previous award winners, recipients should have successfully completed past project(s) on time, achieved goals, and were responsive in communications with NEEF, including submitting a satisfactory Final Report.
  • While all natural and resouce stewardship projects on the aforementioned DoD lands are eligible, special attention will be given to projects that celebrate the 100th anniversaries of Armistice Day and/or the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Applicants are also encouraged to implement projects that contribute to the restoration and resiliency of DoD lands. 


II. Funding Restrictions

Award funds cannot be used for:

  • Lobbying, propaganda, or attempting to influence legislation in any way.
  • Influencing the outcome of any specific election through any means.
  • Covering budget shortfalls, general support or endowment funds.
  • Land acquisition or real estate purchases.
  • Giveaways or gift item, such as t-shirts.
  • Purchasing food.
  • Paying for labor or salary costs.
  • Scholarships, fellowships or grants to individuals.
  • Any costs not directly related to the funds requested in the proposal.

Purchasing items required to complete work (e.g., small tools, garden gloves) is allowable. Funding for signage will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, and may be allowable provided the signage is installed by the volunteers during the event. Funding requests for tools and signage should be balanced against other project needs.


III. Timeline

NEEF prefers that projects take place on NPLD, Saturday, September 22, 2018. Alternate dates for NPLD events may be allowed for those regions where weather conditions during September are prohibitive.  However, all projects must be completed by December 1, 2018.

Application Due: by 11:59pm (EST) on Monday, July 30, 2018

Awards Announced: end of August/early September 2018

National Public Lands Day project: September 22, 2018 (or alternate date)

National Public Lands Day project completion deadline : December 1, 2018

Final Reports Due: January 18, 2019


III. Submission

National Public Lands Day DoD Award applications are only  accepted through NEEF’s online system. Follow these steps to register and begin your application:

  1. Click here to apply.
  2. You will be taken to a login page. If you have not created an account from a previous NEEF award, select Create New Account. If you have created an account with NEEF, skip to step 4.
  3. Follow the instructions to create your account. It will ask you for your contact information as the account holder and the contact information for your organization’s representative. Contact information supplied in the User Information section should reflect the individual who will be directly handling the application process for your organization. In the Organization Information section, we recommend that you include the contact information of the person in charge of your installation site or office. This would be the person who is authorized to sign off on items such as Award Agreements.
  4. Upon creating an account, it will take you to your home screen. To start your application, click Apply in the menu on the left. You will be taken to a list of NEEF awards and funding opportunities. Select 2018 National Public Lands Day DoD Awards.
  5. Complete the application. Remember:
    1. You can save the application and return later.
    2. Pay close attention to character limits.  These limits include spaces!
  6. Once you have completed the application and uploaded all attachments, click Submit Form to complete your application. If you do not click Submit Form, you will not have completed your application. You will be directed to a confirmation screen upon submitting. 

 If you have any questions or problems, please consult our FAQ or don’t hesitate to contact us at


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NPLD DoD Award Frequently Asked Questions