Community organizations, schools and parks in 30 cities and towns across the country will receive grants totaling $6 million from the NFL Foundation and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Grassroots Field Grant Program — a partnership of the NFL Foundation and LISC, the nation's leading community development support organization — to build or refurbish neighborhood football fields.
The grants — the most in a single year since the partnership began in 1998 — bring the total commitment to $58 million and have led to the creation or refurbishment of 416 fields nationwide.
This round of funding will include new fields, or field enhancements, in:
The fields are newly built or significantly renovated, with improvements including, irrigation systems, lights, bleachers, scoreboards, goal posts and turf. Grants are issued once established funding thresholds are reached for each project.
"Over the last two years, we've seen that it's more important than ever to make sure our youth and their families have access to safe and reliable spaces to play and stay active," said Alexia Gallagher, Vice President of Philanthropy and Executive Director, NFL Foundation. "Working with LISC on the Grassroots Field Grant program has positively impacted the lives of millions across the country, and we look forward to continuing such impact in even more communities."
LISC identifies local, nonprofit and community-based agencies that have an interest in building or refurbishing football fields in schools and neighborhood parks. The local agencies are provided with financing and technical assistance to improve the quality and safety of fields in their communities. The agencies oversee the construction, maintenance and programming of the fields.
"Outdoor recreation, and the health benefits that come with it, is in high demand throughout the country," said Beverly Smith, LISC's vice president of sports & recreation. "These new fields, like all of those the NFL Grassroots Program has established over the years, will provide opportunities for young people to compete in safe, healthy, structured environments."
The next grassroots funding cycle begins on January 31 and the deadline for proposal submissions is May 31. Details on how to apply will be available beginning January 31.