Multistate Conservation Grant (MSCG) Program
The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA) and the Service work cooperatively to manage T-MSGCP and R3-MSGCP. Administratively, both programs function similarly, with AFWA providing the Service with a priority list of projects to be considered for award and the Service administering the program and managing the awards. This Funding Opportunity Announcement provides application guidance for both of these competitive programs. Eligible grant proposals are shared with the AFWA National Grants Committee (NGC) for review and ranking to aid in the selection process. Proposals must address eligible activities in one or more of the selected AFWA Strategic Priorities to be considered. Strategic Priorities are annually selected by AFWA to establish the State, Commonwealth, and Territory fish and wildlife agencies' (States') conservation priorities (under T-MSCGP) or national recruitment priorities (under R3-MSCGP), and they are used to guide proposal development and grant selection for the programs. The primary goal of both programs is to provide grant funds to address regional or national priority needs of the States and their partners that are beyond the scope and capabilities of a single State. Projects selected and awarded are annually published in the Federal Register. Lists of past awards are also available from the Service and AFWA (see Section G, Federal Awarding Agency Contacts). Recipients awarded grants under T-MSCGP may use the funds for sport fisheries and wildlife management including research projects, boating access development, hunter safety and education, aquatic education, fish and wildlife habitat improvements, and other purposes consistent with the enabling legislation. Recipients awarded grants under the R3-MSCGP can only use the funds for designing or implementing hunter recruitment and recreational shooter recruitment projects that promote a national hunting and shooting sports recruitment program, including related communication and outreach activities. FY 2022 Strategic Priorities for MSGCP funding: Strategic Priorities FY 2022 Strategic Priorities for the MSCGP 1. Conservation & Science A. Large Landscape Systems & Species B. Climate C. Wildlife Disease Including Connections with Human Health (“One Health”) D. Data E. Human Dimensions & Social Science F. Invasive Species 2. Relevancy & Inclusion & Participation A. Enhancing Conservation Through Broader Engagement B. Communication Programs that Further Regional & National Conservation Efforts C. Implementing and/or Expanding Internal and External Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Efforts 3. Coordination, Capacity Building & Fish and Wildlife Agencies Support A. Leadership Development B. Conservation Education C. Coordination of International, National & Regional Conservation Efforts & Policies D. Integration of Law Enforcement 4. Trust Fund Stewardship A. Research that Informs & Supports Conservation Efforts B. Trust Fund Education & Promotion of North American Model of Conservation (“Legal Strategy”) C. Conservation Law Education 5. AFWA Priorities Identified in AFWA Funding Principles (submitted by ExCom) A. Management Assistance Team B. Management of MSCGP Program C. CITES and International Conservation Programs and Their Impact of State Agencies D. Coordination of Conservation on National Scale 6. Recruitment, Retention, Reactivation (R3)* *The category was recently developed in response to the Pittman Roberson Modernization Act and includes up to an additional $5 million for R3 projects focused specifically on hunting and shooting sports. The Association is also requesting R3 projects focused on fishing through this category although they will be funded through the Traditional MSCGP program using available Sport Fish Restoration funding. a. Monitoring and Evaluation (Wildlife Restoration Only) Description: Development of tools, trainings and technologies that allow R3 practitioners to document the influence of R3 effort implementation on the target participants’ or populations’ initiation into and/or increased avidity in hunting and/or recreational target shooting. Potential projects might include: Development of tools to support data collection methodologies, data dashboards, and resources that increase R3 staff competency and capacity to evaluate, manage, and interpret data in order to benefit decision making. Creation of R3 effort outcome indicators measurement and collection systems that allow participant and license sales data to be summarized and compared at regional or national scales. b. Marketing Description: Identification, development and implementation of strategic marketing tools and resources (with defined and measurable R3 outcomes) intended to 1) maximize social support for (from increasing broad societal awareness and acceptance, to connecting prospects with opportunities) and to 2) increase participation in hunting and/or recreational target shooting. Projects will also be considered for fishing participation under this category using funds from the Traditional MSCGP. Potential Projects might include: Market research; best marketing practices; development of marketing toolkits; strategies to form regional or national marketing campaigns; or increase community-wide engagement and implementation of marketing tactics. c. Mentoring Description: Identification and evaluation of elements of successful mentoring programs as well as current mentor/mentee motivations and application of that knowledge to expand and promote effective mentoring or instructional efforts from the current base of hunting and/or recreational target shooting participants. Projects will also be considered for fishing participation under this category using funds from the Traditional MSCGP. Potential projects might include: Development of program guidance to increase effectiveness, capacity, scalability, and collaboration of partners; efforts to increase involvement and marketing to current participants to become mentors; efforts to increase understanding and engagement of potential mentees; and efforts to facilitate effective brokering of mentoring or instructional experiences within populations of mentors/instructors and prospective mentees/students. d. Engaging New Audiences Description: Assist organizations and R3 efforts with targeting new or underserved audiences by further defining likely new and efficient audiences, and then identifying effective pathways and tools to create targeted R3 efforts to engage those new and diverse audiences. Proposals focused specifically on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiatives are encouraged. Potential projects might include: Development of tools to increase the effectiveness of targeted R3 efforts; evaluation of adoption and effectiveness of existing toolkits; research projects to understand potential target audiences; development of additional toolkits or trainings to increase organizations’ effectiveness and capacity in retaining new hunting and target shooting participants. Projects will also be considered for fishing participation under this category using funds from the Traditional MSCGP. e. R3 Capacity and Infrastructure Description: Assist the R3 community in increasing capacity and infrastructure to address regional and national R3 threats and barriers; and provide for the unification of strategic and effective R3 efforts by state and federal fish and wildlife agencies, NGO and industry partners to yield measurable outcomes. Potential projects might include: Development of resources to help organizations improve effectiveness in R3 efforts; projects that increase partners’ (industry, NGO, regional associations, etc.) capacity to work on collaborative R3 efforts; development of tools that foster effective communication, planning, coordination, and networking at all levels on R3 efforts; facilitation of strategic efforts to unify the R3 community in its pursuits.