Mount Grace organizes its conservation, stewardship, and outreach efforts through six programs, each with a distinct focus and set of goals.
AmeriCorps-Massachusetts Land Initiative for Tomorrow (MassLIFT) is a collaborative effort of seven regional conservation groups. MassLIFT aims to increase collaboration among local conservation groups, increase the land protection and outreach capacity of volunteer conservation groups, foster a conservation ethic in young people through volunteerism in service to the land, inspire a new generation to pursue careers on the land, and increase support for conservation in the community as a whole by encouraging diverse community members to use protected lands. MassLIFT is funded in part by an AmeriCorps grant administered by the Massachusetts Service Alliance.
The Community Conservation Program provides land conservation services to communities. Through the program, Mount Grace welcomes interested communities with potential conservation projects; strategizes with communities to implement conservation of parcels of interest; provides logistical services such as conservation project management, land management, geographic information system (GIS) mapping, and fundraising to facilitate conservation; and educates and empowers communities to undertake their own projects.
The Farm Conservation Program works to identify and protect the working farmland in north central and western Massachusetts. Our farmland conservation projects support and protect the agricultural resources of our region and in doing so sustain our local economy, support the environmental stewardship and strengthen the rural character of our region.
As a guardian of our region’s unique natural heritage, the Landscape Conservation Program works to protect ecologically important lands, waters and wilderness for the benefit of nature and people. Our conservation projects maximize by design the protection of the plants, animals, communities and natural systems—common and uncommon—that characterize the diversity of life spanning our four-ecoregion territory.
The North Quabbin Regional Landscape Partnership is a voluntary association whose members represent town boards, state and federal agencies, regional planning organizations, land conservation groups, and landowners working together to protect strategic open space within the rural landscape of twenty-six towns in the greater North Quabbin region. The Partnership, which shares office space at Mount Grace’s Skyfields headquarters in Athol, is an independent consortium of groups with its own website, board, and bylaws.
The Stewardship Program works with a dedicated volunteer network of natural resources and land management professionals, and committed citizens, to demonstrate how effective conservation requires a balance between land protection and stewardship. The Stewardship Program employs techniques based on science from the fields of forestry, conservation biology and agriculture, that demonstrate how active and responsible stewardship can provide long-term environmental and economic rewards. The program assists landowners of conserved properties with sustainable solutions to land management challenges.
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