Rural Catalyst Grants

The Rural Catalyst Grant Program strengthens the internal capacity of organizations as they work to achieve goals outlined in Boettcher’s Rural Leadership Collaborative meetings. Our Rural Leadership Collaborative meetings are quarterly gatherings where rural leaders come together to discuss strategies that advance their organizations, communities, and regions. 

There are two funding cycles to apply for Rural Catalyst Grants.

Grants Overview

These capacity-building grants range from $1,000-$10,000 and are distributed to support the following types of projects:

  • Strategic planning: Identifying elements of a blueprint that helps an organization accomplish its goals.
  • Convening: Bringing people, ideas, and resources together to move forward an issue, topic, or opportunity.
  • Short-term staffing or contractors: Supporting employees or expertise recruited for short-term employment contracts to meet limited, one-time support needs.
  • One-time operating costs: Covering expenses related to the operation of the organization or program that are not recurring, such as tap fees, application fees, public outreach, or education material expenses.

Eligible Issue Areas: Current eligible areas include affordable rural housing, childcare, hiring and retaining a rural workforce, leadership pipeline and diversification, mental health, rural placemaking, and community-to-community collaboration. 

Eligibility and Criteria: All applicants must have had at least one staff member, volunteer, or board member attend the Foundation’s Rural Collaborative meeting focused on one of the above issue areas. Organizations that are based in rural Colorado or primarily serve rural Colorado will be prioritized.

Key criteria to consider when applying include:

  • Is this a strategic opportunity for the organization rather than just general support?
  • Is the potential for this activity to tangibly impact one of the eligible issue areas?

Grants will be awarded after a competitive review.

Timeline to Apply - 2024

Note: We prefer that organizations only submit one application of the following grant opportunities (Leadership Practitioner Catalyst Grant, Rural Catalyst Grant, or Community Connections Grant) per cycle.

Cycle 1: February 1 - March 1

Grant Inquiry Form Submission

Cycle 1: May 16

Notification of Funding

Cycle 2: August 1 – August 30

Grant Inquiry Form Submission

Cycle 2: November 20

Notification of Funding

Staff will review inquiries during the acceptance windows, typically responding within six weeks of receipt, to inform organizations if they will be invited to submit a full application. Questions about the grants process for Rural Catalyst Grants can be emailed to Garrett Mayberry, program manager, at

Additional Types of Grants


Community Connections Grants

We invest in initiatives or infrastructure projects that bring people together or fosters the connections between individuals and/or organizations.
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Leadership Practitioner Catalyst Grants

The Leadership Practitioner Catalyst Grant Program strengthens the capacity of leadership organizations that are working to create a more inclusive and accessible leadership ecosystem in Colorado.

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