REAP Conservation Education Program

The Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) Act of 1989 established as one of its key provisions the Conservation Education Program (CEP) Board. Annually, the CEP Board is responsible for allocating $350,000 in grants for conservation education. This publication is intended to assist you in developing grants for the CEP Board’s consideration.

The five members of the CEP Board, as required by law, are appointed, one each, from the state departments of education and natural resources, the Iowa Association of County Conservation Boards, Iowa Association of Naturalists, and Iowa Conservation Education Coalition. The Department of Natural Resources provides staff to carry out the duties of the board. The REAP Act recognizes that environmental education is one of the long-term integrated efforts that is needed to conserve and protect Iowa’s natural resources.

It states the duties of the CEP Board are to:“...revise and produce conservation education materials and specify stipends to Iowa educators who participate in innovative conservation education programs approved by the board.”

The CEP Board reserves $25,000/year for mini-grants through the CEP Perpetuate a Good Idea Grant Program. The CEP Board may elect to use additional REAP CEP funds to award more than $25,000 of mini-grants, or they may elect to not spend all of the funds allotted for the Perpetuate a Good Idea program. As with the REAP CEP original grant program, only projects meriting funding will be awarded grants.

IAN's grant priorities have been to favor grants that are:

  1. regional or statewide in nature
  2.  cooperative efforts among entities, organizations and agencies, and
  3. long-term programs that evaluate the effectiveness of their programs.

IAN supports quality teacher training statewide, including creation of materials and training on Iowa-based natural resources. IAN also is interested in research projects, and supports environmental efforts for grades 6-12 and adult education. REAP-CEP committee members are happy to visit with you about your ideas. The committee always is looking for new, innovative projects to fund.

REAP CEP Update Newsletter

For free electronic updates about REAP CEP and other environmental education news, send an email to with "Subscription to REAP CEP Update" in the subject line. You can expect about 12 emails per year, 6 of which will be the REAP CEP Update Newsletter.

Grants are due November 1 and May 15 of each year.

Grant applications are reviewed two times annually. Applications must be emailed 5 p.m. Iowa time by May 15 or November 1 to be eligible for funding.

Check out for the most up-to-date information about submitting grant proposals to REAP CEP.