This Earth Day, Hilltown Land Trust, along with six other land trusts in Western and Central Massachusetts, are encouraging our communities to help save the land that supports us all.
The third annual “Give Back to the Land Day” on Friday, April 22, will be a 24-hour online giving day to raise funds for local land trusts that work to conserve trails, forests, farms, and waterways in Massachusetts.
Community members are invited to visit www.givebacktotheland.org to learn about the work of HLT and other local land trusts and support this work with a gift. Generous donors from HLT’s Board and past Board members are matching online donations made before midnight on April 22, up to the first $5,000.
This year, North County Land Trust, based in Leominster, and Pascommuck Conservation Trust, based in Easthampton, will join HLT and the other land trusts – Berkshire Natural Resources Council based in Pittsfield, Franklin Land Trust based in Shelburne Falls, Kestrel Land Trust based in Amherst, and Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust based in Athol – to host the third year of this Earth-Day-themed online giving day.
In the first two years, donors raised over $150,000 for land conservation in Western and Central Massachusetts through this online giving day. This year with the addition of the two new organizations, participating land trusts hope to raise at least $80,000 to support protecting and taking care of forests, farms, wetlands, and waterways in the region.
Each of the land trusts that are part of Give Back to the Land serves a distinct geographic area in Western and Central Massachusetts, but often collaborate on projects that join their regions. Hilltown Land Trust has partnered with Kestrel Land Trust and Franklin Land Trust on multiple land conservation projects in the past three decades, conserving over a thousand of acres of land and multiple public trails together.
“Forests help improve the air we breathe and store and capture carbon from the atmosphere. Western and Central Massachusetts have the largest blocks of unbroken forest land in the Commonwealth, and conserving these spaces is vital to our ability to weather the effects of a changing climate.” stated Sally Loomis, Hilltown Land Trust Executive Director.
The theme of this year’s Earth Day celebration is “Invest in Our Planet,” stressing the power individuals have to make a real difference for the Earth.
Early giving starts on Saturday, April 16th, and people can make donations until midnight on Earth Day, April 22nd.
People can also support this effort by spreading the word, by sharing this webpage, sharing HLT’s video on social media, create a Facebook fundraiser and inviting friends to give, or hosting a Give Back to the Land day fundraiser. They simply need to create a profile (or sign in to an existing MightyCause account), personalize the template, then share their giving page with others who care about the earth!
“Our donors, volunteers, and other supporters are the reason ecologically important land get conserved in the Hilltowns for generations to come! Without the support of the community, none of the work of land conservation is possible,” said Sally Loomis.