Grants

The City of Aspen’s Grant Program supports non-profit organizations that promote a mentally and physically healthy community; provide protection for our natural environment; and create opportunities for connections for all community members, through partnerships, ease of access, stewardship, arts and cultural enrichment, and innovation.

Since 2011, the City of Aspen has contributed more than $13 million in grant funding to our local non-profits in recognition of the vital role they play in our community.  

2022 Grants Awarded

In April, Aspen's City Council approved the distribution of $1,455,832 to 95 local nonprofits that provide essential support to the community. This amount includes an additional allocation of $200,000 made available through the City’s Real Estate Transfer Tax (RETT) collections to enhance funding for the Arts and Culture grants category. Funding in the three grant areas included:

Arts and Culture

  • Eligible Applications: 26
  • Funded Applications: 26
  • Cash Requests: $980,706
  • In-Kind Requests: $57,577
  • Program Budget: $600,000
  • Funds Awarded: $600,000

Health & Human Services

  • Eligible Applications: 30
  • Funded Applications: 30
  • Cash Requests: $411,050
  • In Kind Requests: $25,000
  • Program Budget: $520,750
  • Funds Awarded: $335,082

Community Nonprofit

  • Eligible Applications: 36
  • Funded Applications: 36
  • Cash Requests: $731,750
  • In Kind Requests: $141,468
  • Program Budget: $520,670
  • Funds Awarded: $520,670

For more information, please read the news release.

2022 City of Aspen Grant Application

The application window for the 2022 cycle is now closed. Information about 2022 application requirements and changes can be found below.

Practice Application: 

In order to make it easier for applicants to work on their application, a practice application can be accessed here. This application is for preparation purposes only and cannot be submitted

Required Financial Disclosure

All applications are required to complete financial disclosure documentation along with required documents as indicated in your application, and submit as a single PDF attached to your application. 

Organizational financial information will be reviewed by City staff prior to submittal to grant review committees. Organizations with areas of concerns may receive reduced or no funding. 

Important Application Reference Materials

Important Changes for 2022

This year’s cycle brings many enhancements to the grants program. The application process should mostly look and feel familiar to you, however, there have been improvements made to increase transparency, clarity, and efficiency. Please take a moment to review the below enhancements before completion of the application.

  • Review Cycle Timing & Application Consolidation: All City Grant programs now share the same application and the same review cycle.
    • A simpler application will be used for requests of $5,000 or less in order to ease the logistical burden of applying for smaller funding amounts. 
  • Grant Review Committees: Applications to each grant program (Arts & Culture, Community Non-Profit, and Health & Human Services) will now be reviewed by Review Committees specific to each program.
  • Program Philosophy & Strategic Focus Areas: City Council has adopted an overall grant program philosophy along with strategic focus areas for each grant program. Alignment with these guidelines is now an important component of application review.
  • Application Review Criteria: City staff will evaluate the financial health of organizations and provide feedback to the Grant Review Committees. Grant Review Committee members will consider this information, and in addition score each application based on how well each addresses a set of review criteria. A list of these criteria, explanations, and relative weightings can be found in the Important Application Reference Materials section
  • Application Funding: Application funding recommendations will be determined by the Grants Review Committee’s assessment of applications’ adherence to review criteria and the assessment of the financial health of the organization. Review Committees are also allowed to note any unusual circumstances not captured by the scoring criteria.  All information will then be provided to City financial staff and the Grants Steering Committee.  After the Steering Committee’s review, City staff will then calculate the final scores while assessing all considerations and send the recommendations to City Council.    
  • Removal of New Organization Funding Limit: Organizations new to the City of Aspen Grants Program are no longer subject to a first-year funding cap. However, special attention will be paid to each new organizations’ capacity to deliver on its proposal. 

Grant Lifecycle Overview

COA Grant Application Lifecycle

Guidelines & Criteria Posted

  • All information that applicants need is made available prior to the opening of the application window. This includes copies of the application, changes to review criteria, financial guidelines, and other pertinent instructions. City staff hosts a training and Q&A session during this time.

Application Window Opens

  • Applications are eligible for submittal. City staff is available to clarify application requirements throughout the open window.

Applications Submitted

  • Application windows closes. Late applications are not accepted.

Staff Eligibility Review

  • City staff performs a review of organizational financial information, ensuring that participating organizations are eligible to receive grant funding.

Grant Committee Review

  • Grant review committee members evaluate all applications and score each application based on objective criteria. Committee member requests for clarity are facilitated through City staff.

Steering Committee Evaluation

  • The grants steering committee aggregates review committee member scores and uses this score to generate initial funding recommendations.

City Council Finalizes Awards

  • City Council reviews these funding recommendations and finalize award amounts.

Grantee Notification

  • Grantees are notified of award decisions. If receiving an award, grantee works with City staff to complete necessary paperwork. 
  • After notification, any applicant may ask for a summary of the grant review and/or steering committee comments on their application or ask for clarification regarding the decision. In such instances, the City grants representative must be contacted in writing no later than 30 days after the final notification.

Awards Issued

  • Funding is disbursed to all selected grantees.

Apply to Volunteer for a Grant Review Committee

Applications to serve on the Grant Review Committees for the 2022 grant application cycle are now closed. Applications will open in the Summer of 2022 for open spots to serve for the 2023 cycle.

Pitkin County Healthy Community Fund Grants

To access information on Pitkin County’s grants program, please click here. 

Funding History

Find information on the grant funding history.

2022 Grant Funding Recommendations (To Be Finalized Upon Approval of City Council on April 26, 2022) 

More Information

If you have questions, or need further information, please contact John Barker at the City of Aspen 970-920-5716 or john.barker@cityofaspen.com or grants@cityofaspen.com.  



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November 16, 2021 Training Session Recording