The REACH gift fund was created by the interdisciplinary member researchers of the REACH Center and funded by private donations. The fund in turn supports the REACH Research Excellence Award, which for its inaugural cycle is in the amount of $3200 and supports REACH’s mission of “expanding [the] ability for investigators to access pilot funding and to raise and accept funding" for important topics in Cannabis across disciplines (REACH academic futures white paper). The intention is to support two award cycles per year with the fund, in the Fall and Spring.
Funds are awarded based on peer review of submitted proposals by REACH members and scored on significance, approach, potential for future funding, budget, and overall impact. What makes the REACH Research Excellence Award unique is that awardees who are able to secure future funding based on pilot data that was enabled by the award agree to return double the award amount to the REACH Gift Fund. This mechanism was built into the award by REACH members in an effort to continue to support the endowment of the fund for use by future researchers working on important topics in Cannabis