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Shade Structure grant eligibility & application

The American Academy of Dermatology's (AAD) Shade Structure Program awards funds to schools, day-cares, parks, and other non-profit organizations for installing permanent shade structures where children learn and play. Each shade structure award is a maximum of $8,000, which includes the cost for shade structure materials and installation. In addition to the grant, the AAD also provides a permanent sign to be placed near the shade structure featuring sun-safety tips. The AAD receives support for this program through donations from its members, outside organizations, and individuals.

Eligible applicants

The AAD Shade Structure Program is open to 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations and public schools that provide services, programs, and curricula to children and teenagers who are 18 and younger. To be considered, applicants must:

  • Submit a letter of recommendation with your online application from an AAD member dermatologist. Locate an AAD member dermatologist by using the Find a Dermatologist tool.

  • Demonstrate an ongoing commitment to sun safety within your organization. A sun safety/skin cancer awareness program must be in place for at least one year prior to application. Your organization's sun-safety awareness program can include use of the AAD's sun-safety resources or the Good Skin Knowledge curriculum. Bonus points are awarded for using AAD-branded materials. However, you may also use original content developed specifically for your audience, or repurposed materials available from other organizations.

Important information

Grant winners will be required to submit materials within 45 days of award notification in order to receive the grant checks. Awards are made in March.

Materials are:

  • W9 for the applicant organization

  • Shade project vendor invoice

Please note: Permits are sometimes required for shade builds and can take up to 30 days to obtain. The AAD does not require to have permits on file, but suggests securing permits as early as possible, if needed, in order to meet our deadline.

Shade structure installations must be completed by November 30.

Grant winners who are unable to supply the W9 and invoice within 45 days of award, will forfeit their grant to a runner up applicant.

IMPORTANT: For reference, $8,000 will cover most shade sails of 10’ X10’, however many shade projects require additional resources. Therefore, please make sure you will have the additional funding necessary for your project to be installed by calendar year end.

Additional information about the program can be found in FAQs. Thank you for your interest in the AAD's Shade Structure Program.

If you have additional questions, please email shadestructure@aad.org.

Apply for a Shade Structure Grant

The application for the 2025 Shade Structure Grant will be open from October 1 - December 15, 2024.