Funding Opportunity: Outdoor Physical Activity Infrastructure for Ages 10-14

Funding Overview

The goal of this funding opportunity is to promote and support quality physical activity for kids between the ages of 10 and 14 by increasing access to outdoor public spaces that are designed to encourage physical activity.

As children reach age 10, physical activity continues to be important for good mental and physical health. While playgrounds positively influence physical activity, expand social interaction, and increase sense of community ownership, often, they may not be appealing to older children. A focused outdoor physical activity environment should be inviting and challenging to this age range, have age-appropriate activities that are physically and mentally challenging, and allow kids ages 10-14 to bond with friends at the same time.

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Have questions? Contact your Program Officer for more information.


  • Age: While the physical activity space must serve kids between the ages of 10 and 14; the space should include opportunities to serve the whole family and be accessible to kids of all abilities.
  • Need: Preference will be given to proposals from organizations constructing a physical activity space focused on ages 10-14 in vulnerable communities as determined by one of the following pieces of community data:
    • We will consider grant requests from communities serving a significant number of kids ages 10-14 from economically disadvantaged households, including low-income earners and working-class families, or
    • We will consider grant requests from communities that do not have age-appropriate focused physical activity space within one mile in an urban area and 10 miles in a rural area.
  • Community Engagement: Applicants must provide a plan showing how kids ages 10-14 and other members of the community will be included in the planning, implementation and maintenance of the space and how the space will reflect the whole community.
  • Attractive to the age group: Applicants must provide their ideas for how they will make the outdoor space appealing to kids ages 10-14, considering the type of equipment, the spatial arrangement and how the applicant will cultivate a fun and inviting culture.
  • Activation: Applicants must provide a plan showing how they will draw neighborhood kids and other community members to the space as a community attraction and destination during their free time.
  • Accessible: The space should include equipment and materials that suit a range of needs for kids ages 10-14; that is inclusive of those with physical, intellectual and sensory impairments; and supportive facilities and amenities.
  • Admittance: If on school grounds, the physical activity space must be open to the general public during non-school hours.

Note: The criteria and funding policies are guidelines, not requirements. Please contact the program officer if you would like to explain your circumstances or specific community needs. We are happy to talk to you about your ideas and whether they align with the funding opportunity.

Technical Assistance:

Applicants may be asked to work with a consultant who has experience designing outdoor physical activity spaces for this age range.

Such a space couples encouraging activities that are physically and mentally challenging with an opportunity to bond with friends. Specialists consider not only the type of equipment that will be installed but also the spatial arrangement of the features so that there are several ‘pods’ of activity in a clear, uncomplicated, and unambiguous layout.

Associated Measurable Results

  • Applicants will be asked to indicate how their work will numerically increase the number of underserved Coloradans who have convenient access to recreational physical activity, including the number of children in this age group (10-14 years old) or number of kids in the neighborhood.

We often partner with third-party evaluators, contractors and other organizations over the course of our work with applicants and grantees. Your application and its attachments may be shared with these individuals or entities during the review process and grant cycle. All third-party organizations partnering with the Foundation have signed a confidentiality agreement and will not use or share the information for purposes outside of the scope of work specific to the grant application or grant award. If you have any concerns or would like additional information, please email or call our senior director of Grantmaking Operations at 303-953-3600.

What We Will Fund
  • Fixed Infrastructure: Funds can be used to purchase tangible, immovable, age-appropriate, outdoor equipment and necessary associated surfacing that encourages physical activity among kids ages 10-14.
  • Ground Markings: Funds can be used to support costs associated with painting the ground with colorful, engaging and stimulating game and activity patterns that encourage physical activity.
  • Community-Based Planning: Funds should be used to meaningfully engage kids ages 10-14, parents and community members in planning and designing the space to facilitate ownership and empowerment.
  • Signage: Up to 5 percent of funds can be used to purchase and install clear and identifiable signage and information in and around the area to draw people into the park and encourage use by community residents.
  • Promotion: Up to 5 percent of funds can be used for promotional materials and events, including flyers, newsletters, brochures, and a one-time groundbreaking ceremony to activate people to use the space.
  • Weather Protection: Up to 5 percent of funds can be used to purchase structures for sun, rain and snow protection, including canopies and trees, to encourage year-round use of the space by kids and the community. 
  • Amenities: Up to 5 percent of funds can be used to purchase outdoor furniture such as tables, benches, and grills; build bathrooms; construct parking lots; address safety issues, or provide other amenities as long as they support social accessibility.
What We Will NOT Fund
  • Freestanding Equipment: Funds cannot be used for freestanding equipment such as balls, bats, nets, jump ropes, parachutes, weights, and other movable, non-stationary equipment that would require storage.
  • Athletic Courts and Fields: Funds cannot be used to build fields, courts, or pools for specific sports that may discourage non-athletic kids, such as baseball, basketball, football, lacrosse, rugby, soft ball, soccer, tennis, or swimming.
  • Fitness Stations and Trails: Funds cannot be used solely to purchase and install fitness stations and trails if they will be the main attraction and focus of the space, unless clearly identified as a desire by the majority of kids ages 10-14 at the school or in the surrounding neighborhood.
  • Programming: Funds cannot be used for ongoing programming such as fitness classes, dog-training classes, photography classes, sports camps, festivals, movie nights and other community gatherings, beyond a short period of time for activation.
  • General Maintenance: Funds cannot be used for the maintenance of existing resources related to landscaping, surfacing, trash, paint, drainage, hardware, sidewalks or other maintenance in isolation from the purchase and installation of the equipment.
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