discussion / Camera Traps  / 24 January 2024

Funding for Camera Trap Projects

Hello everyone; I'm a current Peace Corps volunteer serving in South America and wanted to start a camera trap program. I am working with a local nonprofit. This idea would use camera traps as a lynch pin for research, economic development (eco-tourism - the local town suffers from a lack of economic opportunities), and education

Would anyone have any suggestions on where I can look for funding to purchase camera traps for our project? 

Very cool! Where in South America are you? Where are you looking to deploy?

After 3 years, I just got a project funded overseas (the limiting factor was that to apply you have to incorporated in the country for a while)- it was quite a process but Im not sure how much of my experience would apply to you.

Solid starting points:

Try teaming up with someone local who knows the in's and out's of the government & NGOs in the area. 
Try finding existing government projects, and NGO projects that are already funded who's scope aligns with your camera trap concept.

A lot of time the funding moves in cycles, so you have to do this ground work so when the next funding round comes you are part of the conversation.

Is this helpful? The question is pretty broad.

Camera traps are relatively cheap - compared to constructing a building or buying a vehicle - so you are looking for a small grant of maybe a couple of hundreds to a thousands dollars. I think your best bet is to use a crowdfunding platform.

At dedicated sponsors/funders in nature conservation, you will probably not have a lot of luck. This is why I think so. I have a database with about 250 funding organizations and programs and I searched ( with DuckDuckGo ) all their websites for 'camera traps', 'camtrap' and 'camera trap' . About 50 of these showed 10 hits or more ( which I use as an indicator of interest in camera traps, for lack of a better idea ). About 40 of these do not cover South America. Some of the remaining 9 do not work with open calls, and perhaps they don't hand out grants small enough for your purposes ( but hey, you can always expand your project ). I quickly scanned my data which show that they approach the topic from various angles, but I did not spot a high focus on development and education. Here is the list, so you can further research them if you still want to try : Wildlife Conservation Network    https://wildnet.org/ ; Future for Nature Foundation    https://futurefornature.org/ ; Re:Wild    https://www.rewild.org/ ; People's Trust for Endangered Species    https://ptes.org/ ; World Land Trust    https://www.worldlandtrust.org/ ; The Mohamed bin Zayed species conservation fund    https://www.speciesconservation.org/ ; International Conservation Fund for Canada    https://icfcanada.org/ ; EDGE of Existence program    https://www.edgeofexistence.org/ ; Conservation Leadership Programme    https://www.conservationleadershipprogramme.org/ ; 

All these are English language sites. If you tell me which country you are in, I can search in Spanish in these sponsors in your country that I know of.