The Cave Conservancy of the Virginias (CCV) funds a variety of projects, including education and outreach endeavors, cave and sinkhole cleanups, purchase of significant properties for protection, original scientific or humanities research on cave and karst systems, among others. Projects should promote or facilitate conservation, management, knowledge or acquisition of cave and karst resources in Virginia and West Virginia. The amount of funding has ranged from a few hundred to tens of thousands of dollars.
(Updated December 22, 2023)
- Grant proposals must be submitted by a project leader through a 501(c)3 or other tax-exempt, non-profit organizations, although the project leader need not be officially affiliated with the organization, such as an office holder or an employee, for example. Qualifying organizations include various Grottos and Sections of the National Speleological Society as well as national, regional, and local cave and karst conservation groups, public and private non-profit universities and colleges, and local and state governmental agencies, among others. Grants are awarded to the organization, not to the individual project leader, and the organization is responsible for disbursement of the awarded funds to the project leader as detailed in the proposal. The Federal Tax ID Number (Tax ID) or the Federal Employer Identification number (EIN) of the organization must be provided as a part of the application process. In addition, CCV may request verification of the non-profit status of the organization, usually in the form of a copy of the original or renewal letter from the Internal Revenue Service to the organization establishing its tax-exempt status. Projects involving the participation of underrepresented minorities and/or first-generation college students are particularly encouraged to apply.
- Projects must involve sites located in Virginia or West Virginia and the immediate vicinity, although the project leader and co-leaders need not be based within this area. Contact the CCV Grants Committee Chair if you are unsure whether your project site lies within this limit. The Current Grants Committee Chair is Blaine Schubert (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- CCV will not fund overhead charges or indirect costs.
- If the project leader or any project co-leader has received funding from CCV, a final report of the completed project must have been received by CCV. A project co-leader is someone whose name appears along with the project leader’s name on the cover page of the proposal.
Deadlines for submission
The CCV Board of Directors meets in the spring and fall to consider proposals for funding. The grant proposal submission deadlines are 12:00 noon (US Eastern Time) on February 15 to be considered at the spring meeting and on August 15 to be considered at the fall meeting. Proposals in Portable Document Format (PDF) should be submitted as a single file to the G&A Committee Chair as an email attachment. Proposals received after a submission deadline will not be considered for the current cycle, without exception. The G&A Committee Chair will send acknowledgment of receipt of a proposal within three days.
Proposal review process
Each proposal will first be checked for its eligibility, completeness (see instructions below) and relevance to the mission of CCV (see the CCV Website for its mission statement). Please read the eligibility requirements and submission instructions carefully. Failure to adhere to these instructions will result in the return of the proposal and the proposal will not be forwarded to the CCV Board for funding consideration. Complete proposals will then be reviewed by the Grants Committee, consisting of selected members of the CCV Board plus additional external reviewers with expertise and experience related to the proposed work. The identity of all reviewers will be anonymous to the project leader and co-leaders. The Grants Committee then presents a summary of the comments by the reviewers and offers a recommendation to the entire CCV Board, which makes the final decision on whether to fund the proposal. We ask the applicants to suggest a minimum of 2 potential external reviewers, with their affiliations and contact information.
The project leader of the proposal will be notified by the Grants Committee Chair of the CCV Board’s decision on complete funding, partial funding, or denial of funding within fourteen days of the Board meeting.
Responsibility of the project leader of a funded proposal
- Submit to the Grants Committee Chair a progress report in PDF format via email attachment at the mid-point of the project if the project duration is two years or more. No progress report is required if project duration is less than two years.
- Submit to the Grants Committee Chair a final report in PDF format within 60 days of project end date as stated in the proposal. The final report is required for projects of any duration.
- Requirement for a progress report and deadlines for submission of reports will be indicated in the award letter. These reports are important to CCV, and to the science, cave, and conservation community. As stated in the eligibility section, on time receipt of reports from previous grants is a requirement for eligibility to submit future grant requests.
- Time extensions for the project end date or for the submittal of reports or both may be granted if needed, by written (letter or email) request to the Grants Committee Chair.
- Acknowledge funding support from “Cave Conservancy of the Virginias” (rather than simply “CCV”) in all products resulting from the project, including fliers, publications, agency reports and conference presentations and posters, and provide a copy of any such product in PDF format to the Grants Committee Chair.
- In some cases, CCV may ask the project leader or any co-leader to serve as an external reviewer of future grant proposals.
Grant Proposal Submission Instructions
(Updated 01 September 2022)
Submit a proposal to the Grants and Awards Committee Chair (email@example.com) as a single email attachment with “CCV Grant Proposal – Project Leader’s Last Name” on subject line. You will receive an acknowledgment within three days of submission.
The text of the proposal should be written double-spaced and left justified (not fully justified) in a commonly available font such as Times New Roman or Arial at 12 point font size. Beginning with item C below, include a header consisting of project leader’s last name and a shortened title of the proposal and a footer with page number on each page. There is no page limit but there is a word limit each on the summary and description sections (see below) so there is no advantage to using a smaller or narrower font or tighter spacing. The proposal must be organized into one single file in PDF format, and must include all of the following items, in order:
A. Dated and signed cover letter on institutional letterhead, addressed to:
Grants Committee Chair
Cave Conservancy of the Virginias
13131 Overhill Lake Lane
Glen Allen, VA 23059
B. Cover page with
- Title of proposal.
- Names of project leader and co-leaders, with job title, organization affiliation, mailing address, email address and day time phone number for each.
- Project start date to end date, in the format of “January 1, 2024 to June 30, 2024”, for example.
- Total amount of funding requested.
- Full name (e.g., The Nature Conservancy rather than just TNC), mailing address, web site URL if appropriate, and Federal Tax Identification Number (Tax ID) or Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) of the tax-exempt non-profit organization through which the project leader is submitting the proposal. The United States Internal Revenue Service requires CCV to report such information, and the amount of grant support provided, for each organization.
- Name, title, email address and daytime phone number of the person responsible for administering the requested funds at the organization given in item 5) above. Provide mailing address if different from item 5) above. Usually, this person is the treasurer or the grants administrator or the sponsored project administrator or the equivalent. If this person is among those listed in item 2) above, copy the relevant information and paste it here.
- A statement on whether the project leader or any of the co-leaders has or has not received grant support from CCV within the previous five years up to the date of the current proposal submission deadline. For example, for a proposal submitted for the January 15, 2024 deadline, the five previous years cover January, 2019 through January 14, 2024. If so, include, as an appendix to the end of the proposal, a copy of the final report if the project has been completed or a progress report if the project is still ongoing as of submission of current proposal.
- Suggestion of at minimum 2 potential reviewers, with their affiliation and contact information.
C. Non-technical summary (limited to 1000 words or less)
Provide a summary of the proposed work, and clearly state its relevance to the mission of CCV (see the CCV Website for its mission statement). This summary should be written for a general audience unfamiliar with the jargon of the specialized area of the proposed work.
D. Project description (limited to 7500 words or less, plus tables and figures if needed)
Describe the proposed work in detail. Include a section each on
- The general background and the specific aims of the proposed project
- The project work plan with a timeline
- The significance to the area of focus and relevance to the mission of CCV
- The anticipated outcomes or products or both, with a timeline
- The list of background references or literature cited
Provide a detailed, itemized budget with a justification for each line item. CCV will not fund overhead charge or indirect cost. Provide a list of other funding sources to which this proposal has already been submitted or will be submitted within three months, along with dates of submission and expected dates of decision. State so if none.
Attach a brief (2 page maximum) biography of the project leader and each co-leader. Provide a paragraph explicitly summarizing the qualification of each person to perform specific tasks detailed in the project description.
G. Appendix (as needed)
Attach the final report or a progress report of any project supported by CCV funding obtained by the project leader or any co-leader within the previous five years, and other supporting material as appropriate. This section may be submitted as a separate PDF file via email if the included material makes the entire proposal too large to be easily transmitted as one single PDF file via email.