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    for our regular grants

Free Rivers Fund Grants

The Free Rivers Fund (FRF) supports initiatives and actions in defense of free flowing rivers. Partnering with the paddle sports industry we provide grants for activist and conservation groups that commit to the fight to protect rivers from dams and development. Free Rivers Fund aims to support those initiatives that most urgently need funding. No matter if you have been an organization for several years already or if you are just starting out with a bunch of ideas but no results to show, we are looking forward to receiving your application! IF YOU ARE FIGHTING FOR FREE FLOWING RIVERS, PLEASE APPLY!

Requirements and Application procedure


To apply for a FRF grant you just need a river and a plan of how the money will be used to help this river become or stay free flowing. This could be either action towards undamming rivers (removing existing structures that prevent a natural flow in a river bed, natural transport of sediments and barriers to migrating fish), or action to preserve free flowing rivers (fighting against new dams or hydropower projects). You do not need to be a registered non-profit organization but you must have a clear plan or already be in action to protect rivers in some capacity.

We do not fund: Clean-Ups, general research projects, general renaturalisation and reforestation projects and any other project that has not the general aim to preserve or reinstate a river in it's free-flowing state. As long as that general goal is met - the kind of project or action is up to you. In the past we have funded: costs for lawyers & legal fees, construction, protests, equipment to conduct research, photography, film & art projects & equipment, travel costs and much more.

Grant money is limited - how strict we have to be on the requirements depends on the number of applications. So if your project doesn't 100% fit the requirements or you are unsure if you are eligible for a grant - just contact us!



The Free Rivers Fund cannot and will not give out money directly to the grantees. This is due to our legal structure and to make this whole project and its paperwork as easy and efficient as possible. Instead of transferring money to the grantees' bank accounts, the Free Rivers Fund can pay bills for the funded projects. If you have expenses for your project, there are several possibilities for you to get your funding: for example you can order goods and services you need and have the invoice issued in our name and we will pay for it directly. Or you send us receipts of what you bought and we reimburse you. More detailed information on how the funding works can be found on our info sheet for applicants and grantees.

The total amount of funding is not fixed but depends on the total incoming donations. We divide the total amount of money that the Free Rivers Fund receives by the number of projects funded. Generally you can expect between 1000€ and 2000€.

Application Procedure

Application is open each year from October on. The initiatives will be chosen by our committee and will be announced the following January.  To apply, please open the online application form (you will find it here in October 2024) and send it to us before January 10th 2025. We are trying to support you as non-bureaucratic as possible - therefore the online application form short. Please only stick to this form. If we have questions or need more info, we will come back to you!

What we want from you

We want you to get your work done and save your river, so we're trying not to cause unnecessary effort for you. However, we do have an obligation towards our donors to keep them updated where their money is going. All we ask you to give us one update during the period of your Free Rivers Fund grant - yes. ONE. We will share this trough our (social) media channels, so please make sure you send one decent picture and a summary of max 4 sentences about what you are doing, your actions, your river, and how your project is going. That's all we ask for!


Please contact us!