Cheering on a KaBOOM! Build Day

One of the biggest challenges many communities face in their efforts to prioritize play is fundraising. That’s why KaBOOM! offers grant opportunities to help communities take bold steps towards beginning or completing playspace projects.

KaBOOM! is not a direct grant-making foundation, nor do we act as a fundraising agent, seeking contributions for specific projects. Occasionally, however, we are able to administer challenge grant programs thanks to our dedicated and generous Funding Partners.

Community-Built Playground Grants

When children’s lives are filled with play, we all benefit: our communities will be healthier and happier today, and our society will be stronger and more resilient tomorrow. KaBOOM! offers a number of community-built playground grants to empower friends and neighbors to collaborate for a common cause – to bring play to their communities. From fundraising and recruiting volunteers, to collecting food and tool donations, these grants are designed to engage and activate community members to take the lead in the build planning process, from start to finish.

Please see a description of each grant opportunity below to find the best match based on your community’s needs. Our application process is extremely competitive, so please be sure to follow instructions carefully.

Build it with KaBOOM! Playground Grant

The Build It with KaBOOM! Playground Grant provides eligible communities with the majority of funds, tools and resources they need to build a custom-made playground – all in one day! Through this grant program, the majority of the playground funding for the project is provided by one of our generous Funding Partners. Selected groups, referred to as Community Partners, will work closely with a KaBOOM! Project Manager who will lead Design Day and Build Day activities as well as coordinate the equipment and material purchases for the project. Community members will take the lead in recruiting volunteers, securing food and tool donations and completing any necessary site preparation. Learn more about the Build It with KaBOOM! Playgroud Grant.

Grant Details

  • Eligibility:

    • Municipalities and nonprofits serving children of playground age may apply.
    • May not have existing playground equipment onsite. If equipment is present but unsafe for children to play on, communities are eligible as long as equipment will be removed.
    • Contribute $8,500 USD toward the cost of playground equipment.
    • Recruit 75-100 community volunteers to participate in playground Build Day.
    • Own the land on which you wish to build, or possess a long-term lease and obtain permission from the landowner to construct a playground.
    • Complete any needed site preparation on at least 2,500 square feet of flat, dirt surface. Site preparation can include removing old equipment, asphalt, grading the land, etc.
    • Secure soil tests, utility checks, and appropriate build permits in a timely manner.
    • Accept ownership, insurance and maintenance responsibilities for the playspace upon completion of project.
  • Deadline: Applications are accepted based on available funding in the area. However, we accept and encourage applications on a rolling basis, as new funding opportunities change on a regular basis.

  • How to Apply: Submit your application materials online at

  • More Information: Read frequently asked questions and a see a list of cities with active funding.

  • Contact: If you have any questions about the application process, please email


Build it Yourself Playground Grant

The Build It Yourself Playground Grant is an opportunity for eligible communities to secure $15,000 to be used towards their playground equipment. Playgrounds must be assembled using the KaBOOM! community-build model and completed within 12 months of receiving the grant. Differing from the Build it with KaBOOM! Playground Grant, the grantee will lead their community through a self-guided planning process; the KaBOOM! Grants Manager will be available to provide guidance throughout the process and conduct periodic check-ins to make sure you are on track. Construction and site-related questions will be primarily handled by the local playground equipment representative and/or Parks and Recreation departments.

More information coming soon. In the meantime, please sign up for grant alerts at the top of the page to receive updates.

Creative Play Grants

Imagination Playground Grant

Imagination Playground is an innovative design in play equipment that encourages creativity, communication, and collaboration in play. With a collection of custom-designed, oversized blue foam parts, Imagination Playground provides a changing array of elements that allow children to turn their playground into a space constantly built and re-built by their imagination. For more information about Imagination Playground, please contact

KaBOOM! and The CarMax Foundation are excited to bring Imagination Playground opportunities to the following two cities:

Spokane, Washington

Eligibility: Child serving nonprofit located in Spokane, WA.

Deadline: Applications are due April 20, 2014. Grant reference number: 02440.

How to Apply: Download the application. Then, email your completed application, with the subject line “Imagination Playground application”, to

Contact: Email for more information or questions about this grant. Please include "Imagination Playground-Spokane" in the subject line.

Madison, Wisconsin

Eligibility: Child serving nonprofit located in Madison, WI.

Deadline: Applications are due May 18, 2014. Grant reference number: 02440.

How to Apply: Download the application. Then, email your completed application, with the subject line “Imagination Playground application”, to

Contact: Email for more information or questions about this grant. Please include "Imagination Playground-Madison" in the subject line.


External Grant Opportunities

American Academy of Dermatology Shade Structure Grant Program

The American Academy of Dermatology's Shade Structure Grant Program awards grants to public schools and non-profit organizations for installing permanent shade structures for outdoor locations that are not protected from the sun, such as playgrounds, pools or recreation spaces. Each Shade Structure Grant is valued up to $8,000, which includes the cost for a shade structure and installation.

  • Deadline: Applications will be opening October 1, 2013.
  • Eligibility: Open to 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations that provide services, programs and curricula to children and teenagers who are 18 and younger.
  • To be considered for grants, applicants must:

    • Be recommended by an Academy member dermatologist. Locate an Academy member dermatologist by using the Find a Dermatologist tool.
    • Demonstrate an ongoing commitment to sun safety and skin cancer awareness by having a sun-safety/skin cancer awareness program in place for at least one year prior to application.
  • How to Apply: For detailed information, go to

BE BIG in Your Community Contest

Enter for a chance to see your BIG Idea win a $5,000 grant! The 4th Annual BE BIG In Your Community Contest is open now! Other prizing consists of five $1,000 first prize grants. The BE BIG Fund can help bring your winning idea to life with the help of Scholastic, HandsOn Network and, of course, Clifford! Click here for full details.

Do Something Mini-Grants

Are you working to start a community action project or program? Do you need money to turn your ideas into action? Do you have a sustainable community action project, program or idea? We give out a $500 Do Something Seed Grant every week to help young people just like YOU!

Application Deadline: Currently none; 2-3 month notification. Click here for full details.

General Mills Champions for Healthy Kids Grant Opportunity

Through the Champions for Healthy Kids program, the General Mills Foundation will award 50 grants to nonprofit organizations working to improve nutrition and physical fitness behaviors for youth.

  • Deadline: Applications will be opening on February 1, 2014 and are due on March 1, 2014.

  • Eligibility: Eligibility requirements include:

    • Organizations must have a current 501(c)(3) Public Charity status from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), be a school or a unit of government.
    • Programs should be focused toward youth ages 2-18.
    • Program must incorporate physical education and nutrition education.
    • A registered dietician (spelling?) or registered dietetic technician must oversee the delivery of the nutrition education.
  • How to Apply: Learn more and get the application instructions at

Good Sports Equipment Grants

Good Sports is a non-profit whose mission is to increase youth participation in sports, recreation and fitness activities. Good Sports provides sports equipment, apparel, and footwear to youth organizations offering sports, fitness and recreational programs to youth in need. To learn more about their grant opportunities, visit their website.

LEGO Children's Fund

The LEGO Group is committed to helping children develop their creativity and learning skills through constructive play. The LEGO Children's Fund extends this commitment to local and national organizations that support innovative projects and programming to cultivate and celebrate a child's exploration of personal creativity and creative problem-solving in all forms. The goal is to prepare the next generation - the builders of tomorrow - for a lifetime of creative learning and innovative thinking.

  • Deadline: January 15, April 15, July 15, October 15

  • Eligibility: The Foundation awards grants to qualified tax-exempt organizations (as determined under section 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue code) including educational organizations as defined in USC 26 § 170 (C) with specific, identifiable needs primarily in these areas of support:

    • Early childhood education and development that is directly related to creativity.
    • Technology and communication projects that advance learning opportunities.
  • How to Apply: Learn more at
  • Contact:

    LEGO Children's Fund
    Grant Administrator
    P.O. Box 916
    Enfield, CT 06083-0916


Know of a playground related grant that's not listed here? Let us know! Email with the details!