Planning for Land Acquisition

The Foundation provides limited support to collaborative planning projects that identify important natural areas and wildlife habitat and develop shared priorities among land conservation partners to help protect them.

Planning projects often result in future applications to the Foundation’s Land Acquisition grant program. Successful project teams include work to connect with other funding sources and supporters during the planning project.

The grant application process is now open. If you are interested in applying for Planning for Land Acquisition, please send us an email.


  • 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations

Individual organizations serve as the grant applicant/recipient but the projects are carried out by a team of organizations, often involving both public agencies and private conservation groups.

ALL applicants (nonprofits and local government agencies) are required to provide a Federal Employer Tax ID/Employer Tax ID Number (FEIN/EIN).

The majority of grantees under this program are 501(c)(3) organizations.  If you are from a local government agency or a college or university and you have an idea for a planning project that would lead to the increased acquisition and protection of Illinois native wildlife habitat, please call the Foundation before submitting an application.


  • Identify and map acquisition priorities and divide responsibilities among land protection partners within a specific region of the state
  • Develop strategies for achieving specific land acquisition objectives as part of a larger resource improvement effort (i.e. watershed improvement plans)


  • Develop new plans that identify conservation priorities where collaborative activities do not currently exist
  • Involve users who are committed to taking action as a result of the plan
  • Proposal budget and work plan demonstrates collaboration
  • Planning activities are designed to lead to immediate transactions resulting in the protection of key natural areas
  • Click here for Frequently Asked Questions about Planning for Land Acquisition


Grantees may be awarded a grant at a lower amount than requested. Rarely will the Foundation award a grant to cover the full cost of work proposed.


The grant application process is now open. If you are interested in applying for Planning for Land Acquisition, please send us an email.


  • February 22, 2022 – CLOSED
  • August 23, 2022 – OPEN

Application Process

The following information will be required for the online application.

  • A completed Project Description Form
  • A completed Project Budget Form
  • Map(s) showing the proposed planning area location
  • Organizational or departmental operating budget(s) – one for the most recent fiscal year and the one for the upcoming fiscal year (if available)
  • A financial report for the most recent fiscal year including Balance Sheet, Income Statement, and any notes to financial statements
  • IRS letter confirming EIN
  • IRS Tax Status Determination Letter (for 501(c)(3)’s)
  • Your organization’s most recent Illinois Charitable Organization Annual Report filed with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office (for 501(c)(3)’s)

A confirmation email is sent after an application is received.

The Foundation may follow up with additional questions for applicants.

Applicants will be notified of the Foundation’s decision on grant requests approximately three months after receipt of applications.

Award Process

The Foundation’s review process can take three months or longer.  The grant award process is competitive.  Some projects may be awarded at lower levels than requested; others may be declined altogether.