Funding Opportunity: Healthy Places: Designing an Active Colorado

Funding Overview

Healthy Places: Designing an Active Colorado aims to improve the health of Coloradans by making it safer and more appealing to walk, bike or participate in other daily activities that keep residents active. Through a community-led approach, Healthy Places will support communities to build upon their current assets and identify new possibilities to increase physical activity through changes to the built environment.

Webinar: For more information about this funding opportunity, view the Healthy Places informational webinar.

Grant Deadline: Not accepting applications. This work is in progress.

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Have questions? Contact your Program Officer for more information.

Phase One

From the June 15 applications, the Foundation will select four Colorado communities to receive $20,000 in funding. In Phase One, which may take up to six months, the selected communities will participate in a Foundation-funded Urban Land Institute (ULI) Advisory Service panel. Phase One funding for each community is designed to help offset incurred expenses from before, during and after the panel that may include, but are not limited to; personnel, convening, project and other costs needed to support their participation in Phase One. Upon completing the panel, each community will receive recommendations to improve their built environment. Using these recommendations, community input and existing plans and strategies, the communities will develop a Healthy Places strategy with the goal of increasing physical activity in their community. Communities will have access to members from the ULI panel and an evaluator to assist them. The evaluator’s role includes:

Evaluator: The Foundation has contracted with an evaluation team to provide evaluation technical assistance (TA) and collect evaluation data from each community for a cross-site evaluation. All funded communities will be required to work with the evaluation team to develop an evaluation plan that will include; tracking coalition activities, assessing baseline and follow-up physical activity behavior, assessing the infrastructure or built environment changes and assessing other outcomes as identified by the funded community. Additionally, all funded communities will be required to participate in evaluation activities that contribute to the cross-site evaluation (e.g., interviews, surveys).

The external evaluator will provide the following TA:

  • Assist in refinement of project evaluation plans
  • Provide a simple, standardized template for evaluation reporting (the template will be refined with grantees once funding has been initiated)
  • Provide TA around tracking activities and assessing other outcomes as identified by the funded communities
  • Collaborate to analyze data, prepare presentations and papers, and disseminate knowledge gained from the projects

Phase Two

At the beginning of Phase Two, each community will have the opportunity to submit their Healthy Places strategy to the Foundation for up to $1 million of additional funding. Once submitted, the Foundation will complete a formal review of each strategy with the goal to award funding by spring/summer 2018.

Funding is designed to support the implementation of the Healthy Places strategy. During Phase Two, the Foundation will provide the following support that is outside the scope of the $1 million funding: access to a TA team, which includes an evaluator (as described above), a communications agency and Healthy Places consultant. The roles and responsibilities of the TA team are as follows:

Communications agency: The Foundation will contract with a single agency that is responsible for the communications and marketing of the Healthy Places initiative. At the local level, communities will have the option to:

  • Work directly with selected agency; or
  • Identify a local communications expert who will collaborate with the selected agency

Healthy Places consultant: Each community will have the ability to select their Healthy Places consultant. The consultant’s role and responsibilities are dependent on the identified needs of the community during the strategic planning process. While the primary focus of Healthy Places is to increase physical activity through changes to the built environment, a community may identify other significant challenges to physical activity, including affordable housing, safety, economic opportunity, education, access to health care or other related elements. The consultant will help effectively integrate these additional challenges within the parameters of the strategic plan.

The TA team will work directly with the communities to effectively deploy and leverage the $1 million funding to increase physical activity.


For the Phase One application, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be an organization eligible to receive funding (directly or through a fiscal sponsor) as described on the Foundation’s website
  • Demonstrate readiness and strong alignment with the types of projects we seek as outlined in the section below
  • Must serve a community with a demonstrated need to improve health as evidenced by need-based disparities due or related to social determinants of health, e.g., poverty, educational attainment, unemployment and/or other indicators
  • Must serve a community with disadvantages such as high poverty rates, low educational attainment, high unemployment, or other indicators of need
  • Applicants must take into consideration the implementation and sustainability of proposed activities
  • Funding is not available to previously awarded Healthy Places communities 

What we are looking for:

For Phase Two, the following are examples of a comprehensive project; however, we encourage innovative approaches that are well-considered and relevant to the particular needs of the community being served.

  • Projects and/or programming that engage community members in the planning, design and implementation of specific efforts to increase physical activity through tangible, transformative improvements to their city, town or neighborhood
  • Projects that demonstrate a shared commitment between the community and local government toward improving opportunities for safe, accessible physical activity
  • Projects that take a comprehensive approach to community health and local concerns
  • Projects that identify a lead organization or coalition to champion change and implement the strategy

Likely partners/applicants:

  • Municipalities, including city or town governments, or quasi-governmental entities
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Public/private partnerships