The holiday season is not just about presents. It is a great time of year to give back to the organizations that make your community a better place to live. There are hundreds of great causes to give to in Memphis, but here are a few outdoor specific ones we really love.
- Wolf River Conservancy: The Wolf River Conservancy is responsible for protecting more than 18,000 acres of 42,000 acres within the 100-year flood plain within Tennessee forever. For every $100 donated by members, they receive $1000 in partnerships and grants. The Conservancy has inspired Greenways in Germantown, Collierville, and Memphis that give bikers, skaters, and walkers a place to enjoy safe, scenic paths.
- Shelby Farms Park Conservancy: Shelby Farms is one of Memphis’ greatest resources for the outdoor enthusiast. It is home to a multitude of fauna and flora. Through the Shelby Farms Conservancy you can make a donation that goes to protecting and preserving the Park or you can adopt a buffalo on the grounds. Shelby Farms Park Conservancy is also responsible for maintaining the Shelby Farms Greenline trail that we all love so much. Donations to the conservancy not only help keep the park clean and safe, but also the Greenline.
- Greater Memphis Greenline: This organization is helping “rails to trails” projects pop up all over town. The first successful project from Greater Memphis Greenline was the Shelby Farms Greenline, which has brought outdoor enthusiasts together all across the city, linking midtown to Cordova. Future plans include linking present greenlines to a downtown trail that leads to the river. These projects require funding and helpful volunteers year round.
- Sierra Club: Since 1892, the Sierra Club has been working to protect communities, wild places, and the planet itself. They are the oldest, largest, and most influential grassroots environmental organization in the United States. The Chickasaw chapter in Memphis is always looking for new members and donations. This is a wonderful group to get involved with in your city.
- Peopleforbikes.org: This may not be a local organization, but it is one that can help Memphis receive grants and funding for bike lanes and other bicycle friendly endeavors. Get involved by signing the pledge saying you are for bikes, or make a donation that helps fund bike initiatives and create a more bike compatible America.
- Mississippi River Trail: A trail worthy of everyone’s bucket list, the MRT is comprised of over 3,000 miles of greenways and trails that stretch from Lake Itasca in Minnesota, all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico. When donating to MRT, inc, you are helping fund, develop, expand, and preserve the bicycle-friendly, multi-use trails that connect 10 states.
- Mississippi River Corridor: This project focuses on conserving and improving unique natural beauty and rich history of the wilderness, recreation lands, working farms and forests, parks, and wildlife habitat in the 650,000-acre area from the River to the famous Chickasaw Bluffs. Supporting this cause helps preserve, protect, and enhance the Mississippi River Corridor so that many people will enjoy it far into the future.
- Friends for our Riverfront: If you have picnicked alongside the river, or watched the sun set over the river from the grass lining the Great Mississippi, you will be excited to support Friends for our Riverfront. They were created in 2003 to oppose the Riverfront Development Corporation’s plan to let private interests develop public land at the taxpayers’ expense. The Friends of our Riverfront have a vision that includes revitalization of the river front and public park areas. You can either make a donation through their website, or you can purchase the Save Our Riverfront CD. All profit from the CD benefits FOOR.
There are plenty of ways to spend you money this holiday season, but why not do some good? We’d love to hear from you. What are your favorite causes?
*If we left out your outdoors specific cause, please forgive us. There are so many amazing organizations; it’s hard to name them all