Challenge Cost Share


This program does not award grants or cooperative agreements. The Challenge Cost Share Program is intended to support specific National Park Service mission-related projects that align with goals of local project partners. National Park Service staff will work with local project partners to achieve these mutually beneficial outcomes. This partnership challenge seeks to reward proposals that have the best prospects to build enduring benefits and develop new partnerships.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
National Park Service, Department of The Interior
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants; C - Direct Payments For Specified Use
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2016 No information available. Funds were awarded to a non-profit organization as a pass-through organization to distribute sub-awards.
Fiscal Year 2017 Funding was issued to two Recipients.
Fiscal Year 2018 Data Not Available
Fiscal Year 2019 A number of parks received funding and partnered with non-Federal entities to bring outreach programs to the parks.
Fiscal Year 2020 NPS parks partnered with non-profit and other community organizations to bring mission related programming to the wider vistorship at the individual parks.
Fiscal Year 2021 Parks partnered directly with non-profit and community organizations to provide programing.
Fiscal Year 2022 NPS partners with organizations local to parks and historic sites funding 50% of initiatives that directly benefit the park. Funds are not administered as grants or cooperative agreements.
54 USC §101701(b) Challenge Cost-share Agreement Authority.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
State, local, or tribal government or other public entity, an educational institution, or a private nonprofit organization.
Beneficiary Eligibility
General public, trail system users, and organizations with conservation missions.
NPS staff and interested project partners should discuss and develop their idea in keeping with NPS goals, partners' interests, and the goals and criteria of this Challenge Cost Share opportunity. Every application must meet these Qualifying Criteria before further consideration: Supports National Park Service Responsibilities - The project must benefit one or more national parks, National Trails, and/or Wild and Scenic Rivers. Collaboration and Cost-Sharing - The project must be financially supported, equally, by NPS and partner(s). The partner(s) must commit to providing a total match equivalent to the level of CCS funding received. This match can consist of in-kind goods and services as well as cash from non-federal sources. Maximum Financial Support - The maximum CCS funding provided per project is $25,000. Timing - The proposed project should be substantially complete within nine months from the date that CCS funds are disbursed. No NPS Salaries - CCS support may not be used for any ONPS staff salaries.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is not applicable.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or the Challenge Cost Share project (CCSP) application can be used as the initial Partnership Agreement to establish the relationship and the intent of the partnership. If CCSP funds are transferred directly to a partner, a cooperative agreement or other instrument will be utilized.
Award Procedure
Projects that directly benefit one or more NPS-administered Parks, National Trails, and Wild and Scenic Rivers (including Partnership Wild and Scenic Rivers). Applications are submitted only by National Park Service staff; project partners are expected to collaborate fully in the application process, but are not themselves eligible to apply. Partners may be educational institutions, private for-profit entities, or non-profit organizations. The project must have the endorsement of the NPS, as well as assurance from the local partner(s) that the project's budget is viable.
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
Varies depending on the type and complexity of the project.
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
How are proposals selected?
Not applicable.
How may assistance be used?
This program supports small-scale partnership projects with units of the National Park System, NPS centers and program areas, and National Trails. All projects and activities receiving these funds must meet a minimum 50:50 match of cash, goods, or services from a non-Federal source. Applications must be approved by appropriate NPS park, program, center, or trails staff.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching is mandatory. The non-Federal contribution(s) is at least 50% of the CCSP share and all costs detailed in the budget.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Projects are expected to be completed in one year, but can be extended based on the complexity of the project.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
Stephan Nofield 202-354-6922 1849 C Street NW Room 1344 Washington, DC 20240
Headquarters Office
Stephan Nofield
1849 C Street, NW.,
Washington, DC 20240 US
Phone: 2023546900
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Direct Payments for Specified Use) FY 22$0.00; FY 23 est $0.00; FY 24 est $0.00; FY 21 FY 19 FY 20 FY 18$300,000.00; FY 17$409,399.00; FY 16$377,199.00; - Funding is administered to parks which then partner with non-Federal agencies.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
1 - 384000
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Not applicable.
Examples of Funded Projects
Not applicable.


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