Community Waste Reduction Grant

The Community Waste Reduction Grant (CWRG) program is a competitive program that is open to all governmental entities such as parks, cities, townships and villages, other public sectors, and non-profit organizations.  The applicant's proposal must establish programs and projects that address the unique waste reduction, diversion, and recycling needs of central Ohio.  Projects should emphasize partnership building and collaboration, and address opportunities to leverage the waste stream for community benefit. 

2021 Grant Cycle CLOSED

The application deadline for submitting a 2021 grant application was Friday, September 11, 2020.  Please check back in June 2021 or email Grants Administrator to request to receive notifications for our 2022 grant cycle.

 strongly encourage interested applicants to contact us at 614-871-5100 or email Grants Administrator to discuss project ideas before submitting an application.  
Watch the Pre-recorded Webinar to Learn More about the 2019 Application Cycle
Watch the Pre-recorded Webinar to Learn More about the 2019 Application Cycle
Watch the Pre-recorded Webinar to Learn More about the 2019 Application Cycle


The Community Waste Reduction Grant (PDF) is available to support innovative waste reduction and materials diversion programs by providing financial support to help offset the costs of these efforts.  If a project is awarded grant dollars, SWACO requires grantees to document and measure the impact of the project’s activites.  A final report detailing successes, challenges, and impacts of the projects waste reduction and diversion efforts must be provided in a final report.


The goal of the CWRG program is to increase Franklin County's recycling rate of 49% by funding innovative projects that address  community waste reduction needs and have the ability to be modeled throughout central Ohio. 

Eligibility and Evaluation

Eligible applicants include governmental entities such as parks, cities, townships and villages, and other public sectors.  Other eligible organizations include primary and secondary schools, school districts, universities and colleges, and non-profit organizations.  Organizations and projects must be located in SWACO's jurisdiction to be eligible to apply.  To determine if your organization is in SWACO's jurisdiction, please view SWACO's jurisdiction map (PDF).

Grants are competitively awarded and support efforts focused on diverting materials from the landfill through:
  • Waste Reduction & Reuse
  • Recycling
  • Organic Waste & Food Waste Diversion 
  • Outreach, Education & Awareness
SWACO's evaluation committee carefully considers how well each applicant has addressed project planning, financial viability, need, project sustainability, impact measurement, and outcomes.

The minimum grant amount is $500 and the maximum is $35,000. Applicants must demonstrate a 25% monetary contribution towards the project.  Allowable costs may include: 

  • Recycling & Diversion Equipment
  • Educational Supplies & Materials
  • Diversion Consultants and Service Contracts


  • Please watch our Webinar Recording hosted on July 22, 2020 to learn about the program and hear from some of our past recipients!  SWACO's Grants Administrator was joined by Vincent Roberts, Energy and Environmental Specialist for the Columbus Regional Airport Authority and Kevin Weaver, Public Service Director for the City of Westerville shared information on how grant funding helped their organizations, and can help others in Franklin County, reach their sustainability goals and improve our community's diversion rate.
  • Please watch our Webinar Recording hosted on July 29, 2020 to learn more about the application process, eligibility, and required documentation to be submitted with an application.

Award Recipients

More than $201,000 was awarded for the 2020 grant cycle to fifteen (15) grant recipients, including: the cities of Dublin, Hilliard, Upper Arlington, Westerville, Habitat for Humanity, Local Matters, Columbus Public Health, Columbus City Schools, PAST Foundation, Franklin Park Conservatory, Franklin Township, STEM Middle at Baldwin Road, Furniture Bank of Central Ohio, Food Rescue US, and LifeCare Alliance.

More than $135,000 was reimbursed for the 2019 grant cycle to thirrteen (13) grant recipients, including: CAPA, the cities of Westerville and Worthington, Columbus City School District, Columbus Regional Airport Authority, Food Rescue US, Furniture Bank of Central Ohio, Hilliard City School District, Junior Achievement of Central Ohio, MORPC, Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, Ohio Health - Riverside Methodist Hospital, and Windermere E.S. in Upper Arlington City School District.
More than $114,000 was reimbursed for 2018 grant cycle to eleven (11) grant recipients, including: the city of Hilliard, COSI, Franklin County Public Health, Franklinton Cycle Works, Franklinton Gardens, Hilliard City Schools, Mid-Ohio Foodbank, New Albany High School, Otterbein University, Summer Jam West, and the Arts College and Preparatory Academy.

More than $89,000 was reimbured for the 2016-2017 grant cycle to six (6) grant recipients, including: the city of Bexley, Central Ohio Area on Aging, Goodwill Columbus, Mid-Ohio Foodbank, Ohio History Connection, and the city of Westerville.

Hear from our past grant recipients. Check out our videos below!

Please contact SWACO at 614-871-5100 or email Grants Administrator with questions.