Willamette River Initiative

Willamette River Initiative

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Funding Opportunities

Through the Willamette River Initiative, Meyer Memorial Trust awards approximately $2 million dollars annually. Current funding opportunities are listed below.


Willamette Mainstem Anchor Habitat 2017 Grant Cycle

WRI funds large-scale floodplain restoration projects along the mainstem Willamette River in partnership with the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB) and the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). OWEB administers this grant program on behalf of the three-funder partnership. The Pre-Proposal Solicitation for 2017 is now closed. Application guidelines and timeline can be accessed here for reference.


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Grants

In 2015, WRI adopted a new goal: To advance diversity, equity and inclusion in the movement for a healthier Willamette River system. This year, WRI is participating in the Meyer Memorial Trust’s annual funding opportunity to fund projects in support of this goal.

The Inquiry Application process is now closed for 2017. Meyer will notify organizations in mid-June whether or not they are invited to submit a full proposal. We anticipate making final award decisions by the end of 2017, with funding available to organizations in early 2018. Visit Meyer’s funding opportunity page for more information.


Basin Wide Impact Grants

Many challenges facing the Willamette River system are far-reaching and systemic. Pollution from urban and rural runoff, high stream temperatures, aquatic invasive species, and gaps in our knowledge about river processes and the status of its fish and wildlife are just a few examples. Basin Wide Impact grants support projects that address needs on a broad scale and cannot be tied to a specific geographical location. Projects funded through this strategy may include scientific research, public policy research and analysis, regional or basin wide collaboratives, and broad-reaching public engagement and outreach efforts.

The application process is now closed for 2017. We anticipate making funding decisions by September, with funds available in November.

Download Basin Wide Impact proposal guidelines and application instructions »


Tributary Funding Strategy

In 2009, Meyer selected seven Willamette basin watershed councils to participate in a 10-year model watershed program through a competitive application process. We are no longer accepting applications under our tributary funding strategy.



Most WRI grantees are 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations or have a fiscal sponsor. We can make grants directly to government agencies, though this is rare. For the mainstem anchor habitat strategy, WRI support is limited to projects located above Willamette Falls and in an anchor habitat area (see maps included in OWEB’s application guidelines). Applicants for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion grants and Basin Wide Impact grants may be located anywhere in the Willamette River basin, but projects must be related to the Willamette River or its tributaries. We encourage you to contact us to discuss your project’s eligibility before submitting an application.