Alaska Native Fund  

Advancing Alaska Native Priorities for Protecting the Land and Sustaining Our Ways of Life


Alaska Conservation Foundation (ACF), in partnership with an Alaska Native Steering Committee, launched the Alaska Native Fund in 2011 to advance Alaska Native priorities for protecting our land and sustaining our ways of life.  The fund provides an Indigenous framework for impacting critical environmental issues while promoting innovative strategies to strengthen the capacity of Alaska Native organizations and communities. The goals of the Fund are to:

 1) Leverage more foundation and donor resources for Alaska Native organizations;          

2) Support Alaska Native strategies and solutions on environmental issues; and

3) Build relationships that will grow and strengthen the conservation movement in Alaska.

The Alaska Native Fund will provide annual grants to qualifying Alaska Native nonprofit organizations and individuals.  In addition, through the fund we will host bi-annual Gatherings of Alaska Native organizations and foundations to address emerging environmental issues and develop relationships. To view the most recent Gathering report, please click here.

2016 Funding Criteria

The Alaska Native Fund Steering Committee has identified environmental issues and strategies to be supported by the Fund. Indigenous Knowledge is at the center of the Fund framework, reflecting the powerful connection that Indigenous people have with their surroundings.  

Priority Environmental Issues: The Fund will support work in the following arenas: 

  • Climate Change: Alaska Natives are already feeling the impacts of climate change, including erosion, reduced sea ice, and the impact of warming temperatures upon food sources. The Fund will support Alaska Native documentation of Indigenous Knowledge and other strategies to address climate change. 
  • Food Security: Food security is threatened by unsustainable development, in particular large-scale industrial fishing. The Fund will support Alaska Native stewardship of marine resources, in particular marine mammals and fish (salmon are a critical species). 
  • Sustainable Economies: Oil, gas, timber, and mining activities impact community health and access to subsistence foods. The Fund will support Alaska Native strategies to reduce these impacts and transition to more sustainable economic development throughout the state. 
  • Energy: Skyrocketing energy costs threaten the very existence of rural Alaska Native villages, pushing many people to relocate to urban centers. The Fund will support innovative renewable energy and energy conservation strategies that build local economies and sustain Alaska Native cultures. 
  • Holistic Wellness: Alaska Natives are at higher risk from toxic substances that bio-accumulate (like Persistent Organic Pollutants) due to their intense reliance upon their surroundings. The Fund will support work that draws upon this connection, to advance Alaska Native health.

Core Strategies:  The Fund will support the following strategies:

  • Policy Development: research, planning, and application of Indigenous Knowledge to impact policy
  • Leadership: investing in emerging leaders, Elder voices, exchanges, and mentoring

Youth Organizing: youth identify issues and solutions, and are the project leaders*

  • Communication & Technology: using tools to connect people and inspire change
  • Art and Expression: connecting cultural and environmental preservation
  • Gathering: bringing people together to share strategies, success stories, and collaborate (note: the Alaska Native Fund will sponsor bi-annual Gatherings, but will also fund projects that bring people together)

Grant Range

  • Organization Grant Range: $10,000-$20,000
  • Individual Grant Range: up to $10,000
  • Youth Organizing Grant Amount*: up to $5,000 

*We will consider up to three grants for qualifying youth organizing projects.  


In order to be eligible for an Alaska Native Fund grant, you or your organization must perform work that aligns with the priority environmental issues and core strategies supported by the Fund. In addition, you must: 

  • Be an Alaska Native individual, Tribe or other Alaska Native nonprofit organization (with Alaska Native majority on the Council or Board of Directors); and 
  • Conduct work that has an impact at the community level. 

Applicants that engage Alaska Native communities but do not have Alaska Native leadership (defined above) are not eligible for this funding.  

Applicants must identify the type of funding they are requesting from ANF in their LOI, and the amount of funding must be within the ANF grant ranges (above).


  • September 1, 2015:  Docket opens.
  • TBD: Pre-application teleconferences for interested applicants 
  • December 1, 2015: Letters of Inquiry due
  • TBD:  Invitations for Full Proposals & Declined LOIs communicated
  • TBD:  Full Proposals Due
  • TBD: Grant Awards Communicated


The 2016 ANF Letter of Inquiry cycle is not open until September 1, 2015. 


Please review the Alaska Native Fund guidelines HERE  before contacting us with any questions you may have. Questions may be directed to Program Manager, Loren Peterson ( or  (907) 276-1917.