Tuesday, December 22, 2009

End-of-Year Giving: Local Conservation Organizations Need Your Help

Like many families, charitable organizations have taken a big hit during this recession. If you can afford it, local groups need your help now more than ever. As we've been reviewing our donation plans for the end of the year, we thought we'd pass along the local environmental organizations that get our support.

Potomac Conservancy - So many of the places we love are located along the Potomac River. The Potomac Conservancy is does hands-on work to address the river's many challenges through clean-ups and restoration projects, as well as fighting for the Potomac in the policy arena.

Anacostia Watershed Society - The Potomac may be ailing, but the Anacostia has historically been the Potomac's neglected cousin. AWS has been changing that, through restoration and protection. Their education efforts have gotten thousands of area kids out on the river.

Chesapeake Bay Foundation - As go our rivers, so goes the Chesapeake Bay. CBF has been working since 1967 to Save the Bay and its tributaries, which drain a 64,000 square mile watershed.

Potomac Appalachian Trail Club - PATC maintains not only our local stretch of the Appalachian Trail but many miles of other trails in our area (including trails in Rock Creek Park), a network of great cabins, and a full schedule of group hikes.

Chesapeake Climate Action Network - CCAN is a grassroots group that brings climate change home on the local level. We give them more than cash - Matt will be jumping in the Chesapeake Bay in January at their Polar Bear Plunge. Sponsor him here, or sign up to join him!

Sierra Club - At 1.3 million members, the Sierra Club is the largest environmental organization in the US. But it's a local organization too, involved in many very local issues. When you donate to the national Sierra Club, you automatically become a member of your local chapter. But you can also donate directly to your chapter in DC, Maryland, or Virginia.

The local Catalogue for Philanthropy has featured some of these groups and many others on its Featured Nature Nonprofits list.

Which groups do you like to support? Make your case in the comments.