OPRA Foundation Research Grant

Grant Procedures and Requirements

Program Overview
Ohio Parks and Recreation Association Foundation (OPRAF) administers Research Grants recognizing that research is an essential element to provide more relevant information and services to OPRA members and the public. Research projects should be integrated into agency goals and be mutually beneficial for the agency, its constituents, and the membership of OPRA.

Research Grants are typically categorized by the following;

  • Advocacy – Data and outcomes supporting legislative advocacy efforts primarily at the state level.
  • Operational – Data, outcomes, benchmarks, and standards to quantify or qualify management improvement practices.
  • Academic – Examining the personal or social characteristics of leisure participation and values.
  • Product – Activities designed to create product or service benefits to OPRA membership and the communities they represent.

Funding
Based on available resources, up to $2,000 may be requested per fiscal year. Preference will be given to quality proposals that show a dollar-for-dollar level of matching from requesting agency. This match may include cash or “in-kind” contributions, extended release time for curriculum development, special staff and technology support, or plans for further development opportunities for the project in question.

Funding will be available anytime during the fiscal year, application deadlines will be bi-annual. An OPRAF committee will review the proposals and make funding decisions. Funds will be managed and accounted for according to established OPRAF procedure.

Eligibility
Any Ohio Parks and Recreation Association (OPRA) member/agency is eligible to apply. Shared authorship of proposals is possible; co-authored proposals will share one grant. Applications in all of the above research categories are eligible.

Expectations
Members receiving grants are expected to fulfill the following requirements:

  • Complete the research project that is approved for funding.
  • Include OPRAF logo in documents and marketing materials related to project.
  • Submit all reporting requirements upon completion of project. (See guidelines below.)
  • Prepare a report for the OPRA membership that outlines the results of the project.

Proposal Components
Proposals shall consist of three parts: application, narrative, and budget.

Application: Complete the below application.

Narrative: The narrative (2-4 pages) should include the following information:

  • Statement of project objectives as they relate to needs within the agency, community, or state wide membership
  • Participating agencies
  • Description of specific goals and how results will be shared with appropriate audiences
  • Statement of anticipated impact/benefits to the agency, community, and/or state wide membership
  • Proposed timeline for completion
  • Plan for evaluation of outcomes
  • Additional material(s) may be attached as appendices if it is essential to explaining the proposal.

Budget: Attach a separate page with a description of the budget, including sources of matching funds, if applicable

Reporting Requirements
A final report of 2-4 pages will be due at the completion of the project with the following information:

  • Summary of research objectives and participating agency
  • Evaluation of outcomes and impact
  • Description of subsequent plans
  • Summary of expenses incurred

Review process

  1. Proposals may be received by the OPRA office at any time during the fiscal year with deadlines being January 15th and July 15th every year.
  2. OPRA will notify the OPRAF grant committee of any pending eligible proposals via email communication.
  3. OPRAF committee members will review the proposal and score them with a recommendation for funding level by the end of January and July.
  4. OPRAF chair will review all scored proposals and make final granting decisions based on current funding.
  5. OPRA Treasurer will authorize staff to distribute grants in the first week of February and August.

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