The Community Forest Revitalization Program encourages local government and citizen involvement in creating and supporting long-term and sustained community forestry projects and programs in underserved and disadvantaged communities. Cities, towns, counties, tribes and universities can apply for support to map, plan and manage community forests using Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) resources via the USDA Forest Service. These funds will be used to develop actionable steps to ensure that the benefits of community forests are made available to all, especially those with the greatest need.
To make IRA resources more accessible, DOF is simplifying the application process by working with community partner groups to provide direct technical assistance with a focus on disadvantaged areas. These areas are indicated on the Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool (CEJST).
Who is Eligible
- Communities (planning district commissions, regional commissions)
- Local Government (cities, towns, counties)
- Non-Profit Organizations
- Public Educational Institutions
- Tribal Organizations
Eligible lands include public and tribal lands.
Available Technical Assistance
The following technical assistance provided directly to eligible groups focuses on the stewardship and connection to healthy urban trees and forests.
Canopy Forest Map
Uses spatial data to determine tree canopy cover, urban heat distribution and ecosystem services for your community forest.
Community Forest Master Plan
Creates a data-informed plan, sets goals for planting locations and maintenance, and addresses specific goals such as social-equity and long-term resiliency (including adaptations to climate change).
Community Ordinance Audit
A review of your current forest and tree codes, ordinances, standards and practices. Assistance will also be provided for the creation of new policies and codes to adopt in order to make your community greener while still accommodating growth.
Provides information on the species composition, tree size, health and where you have vacancies for new trees.
Urban Wood Services
Creates a holistic plan and tools for managing your trees after they die, including educational programming and processing solutions.
Facilitation and Engagement
Provides professional support to engage with the public and create community buy-in for your community forests.
Outdoor Learning Spaces
Helps children connect exposure to urban trees with improved learning outcomes and more positive classroom interactions and behaviors.
Community Tree Planting Services
Provides both technical support on species selection and help sourcing and planting trees in public spaces. We will create a plan to help you plant the right tree in the right place.
Need help with any of the above? Consider applying for technical assistance from DOF.
How to Apply
Complete a short online survey-style application (estimated time to complete is 15 minutes).
Once you complete the short survey-style online application, you’ll be contacted to discuss your request. While this is a competitive application, priority will be given to those with the most need as indicated on CEJST. We aim to support as many applicants as possible. All work will be completed over the course of one calendar year.
If you can’t complete the application online, contact Urban and Community Forestry Program Manager Lara Johnson at Lara.Johnson@DOF.Virginia.gov or (804) 239-0813 for a paper copy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Complete a short online survey-style application to request assistance. Assistance is provided directly from one of DOF’s community partner groups or staff (no money changes hands).
Complete a short online survey-style application and if selected, you will need to sign a commitment to participate letter (template provided to awardees).
You still must complete the survey-style application. We need to ensure that the most strategic assistance is provided for your community. The application also includes a section to request project-specific assistance. If you need financial assistance (e.g., for tree maintenance or staff support, etc.), you will need to apply for one of DOF’s grant programs.
All applications will be ranked by experienced staff and community partner groups. Underserved and disadvantaged communities will be prioritized for assistance using the CEJST tool.
Some of your (and your organization’s) time will be needed to review data for accuracy, attend several (up to three) planning workshops, discuss goals and spend time to implement strategies (strategies, of course, will be your decision).