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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Sempervirens Fund

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Forest Conservation, Land Resources Conservation

Mission:

The purpose of Sempervirens Fund is to protect and permanently preserve coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) forests, wildlife habitat, watersheds, and other important natural and scenic features of California’s Santa Cruz Mountains, and to encourage public appreciation and enjoyment of this environment.

Results: Since our founding in 1900, Sempervirens Fund has protected 34,000 acres of redwood forests; planted more than 93,000 trees; and built and maintained more than 60 miles of hiking trails in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Target demographics: Sempervirens Fund serves our partnering agencies and organizations, including California State Parks and Peninsula Open Space Trust; residents of the nearby communities of Boulder Creek, Felton, and the entire Bay Area; and countless thousands of visitors from around the world who come to experience the last remaining redwood forests on earth.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Many species of wildlife, flora, and fauna. Thousands of visitors and local residents.

Geographic areas served: Santa Cruz Mountains; Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, and San Mateo Counties

Programs:

Through Sempervirens Fund, donors can plant a tree, dedicate a redwood tree, or dedicate a grove of redwoods. Sempervirens Fund has a special arrangement with the California Department of Parks and Recreation through which donors to Sempervirens Fund can create personalized redwood tributes in the state parks of the Santa Cruz Mountains, helping create special memories while also preserving California’s redwood forests. http://sempervirens.org/tribute.php

 

Community Stories

52 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

Sempervirens Fund helped me find the perfect redwood grove in Big Basin State Park to dedicate to my mother. Such a genuine, caring, and passionate staff committed to an important cause!

Donor

Rating: 5

Sempervirens Fund enables the preservation of acres upon acres of redwood forest. While much of it is left in a wilderness state, in the last decade they have evolved to have a more active relationship with land that will be used for state parks. They intervened in 2012 to help keep Castle Rock State Park open in the face of state wide cuts. And they continue to work to upgrade Castle Rock with the new entrance that is in progress.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I have donated to Sempervirens Fund as a Redwood Ranger monthly donor for several years now. I am consistently impressed by all the behind-the-scenes work that Sempervirens Fund does to protect redwoods and other wildlife in the Santa Cruz Mountains. They often partner with other, larger organizations with more name recognition, providing their intensive local expertise while not demanding the credit. I am proud to support them.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Sempervirens Fund is exactly the non-profit my family and I were searching for. We were looking for a way to remember and honor a beloved family member, while at the same time providing a small measure of support toward a much larger cause important to us, in this case the protection and preservation of California's coastal redwood forests. Sempervirens Fund invited us to fund a particular sequoia, a redwood tree in the Big Basin area of the Santa Cruz Mountains, designated as "our" tree, which we personally selected from among a number of trees nearby, and to plant a memorial stake at the base of that sequoia with a plaque inscribed with words of our choosing. Sempervirens Fund will assure that the memorial stake stays in place for years to come, certainly through the next several generations of our family at least. Indeed, we have invested in the right to plant other memorial stakes nearby, with their own plaques, to form a quiet, secluded grove for the extended family to visit and enjoy whenever they are able to do so. A special feature of Sempervirens Fund is that anyone, family or friend, can donate to any designated tree, and so remember especially a friend or family-member in perpetuity. We could not be happier with the opportunity that Sempervirens Fund has provided us for honoring a loved one while simultaneously supporting an enormously important earthly cause, the imperiled redwoods. Signed, Ted Dietz, of Kenmore, WA, July 14, 2017 (dietzted@comcast.net)

2

Donor

Rating: 5

My late wife was a tree-hugger who loved redwoods and Big Basin. After her death from brain cancer in March 2014, her family worked with Sempervirens Fund to identify an appropriate site for the "Janette Kettmann Klingner Memorial Grove" in December 2016 and arrange its dedication and scattering of her ashes there in June 2017. From November 2016 to June 2017 their Tribute Giving Manager Amanda Krauss did it all. We are most grateful to her for tramping through Big Basin with me to identify an appropriate grove, arranging our charitable donation to Sempervirens Fund, shepherding its designation through the Calif Dept of Parks & Rec, arranging for State approval to scatter her ashes there, and being present at the grove dedication. Amanda Krauss, thanks!

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been a Trustee and supporter of Sempervirens Fund for over fifteen years. I am very proud of what this organization has accomplished, not just for the many mission focused initiatives it has successfully completed but also for the way it has gone about its business. The Board and staff of Sempervirens Fund serve, for me, as the model of an effective, efficient and well governed non-profit organization.

2 AlannaWao

Donor

Rating: 5

My family camped at Big Basin every year when I was growing up. Now I take my nieces and nephews to introduce a new generation to these magnificent trees. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the people who had the foresight to protect them. It would be an absolute shame for our country to lose such treasures.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

The Sempervirens Fund has been active in protecting land, educating people of all ages, as a model for many other conservation organizations and providing a beautiful and wonderful forest and open space experience for local people and those from around the world. There management, staff and volunteers are excellent and provide an unusually fine opportunity for many to learn and enjoy the forests.

3

Donor

Rating: 5

By providing camp sites in Big Basin State Park they started a backpacking tradition for my son and I 35 years ago. Sempervirens is at the top of my list of charities for its aggressive pursuit of public lands and responsible logging.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

One of the greats. They have a clear vision and concrete goals, and a plan to achieve those fairly specific goals, so one can be assured of progress and clarity as the process unfolds.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Sempervirens Fund does great work and does it well. I have been a volunteer and donor for about the last three years. I am consistently impressed by the professionalism of the staff and the quality of the work they do. Their annual picnic is a wonderful event in the Santa Cruz mountains that brings together people from many walks of life in one park to share outdoor stories and our hopes for the environment. All in all, a great organization to dedicate time or money to.

Donor

Rating: 5

Sempervirens Fund does work that lasts for generations. I give to the trees monthly as a Redwood Ranger because I KNOW that an overwhelming amount of my support goes towards programs that preserve, protect, and connect vital ecosystems in Northern California.

2 Land_Trust_Accreditation_Commission

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Sempervirens Fund is an accredited land trust. Accreditation means Sempervirens Fund meets national quality standards for protecting important natural places and working lands forever. Sempervirens Fund has demonstrated to the Land Trust Accreditation Commission its commitment to excellence. Accredited land trusts meet national quality standards for protecting important natural places and working lands forever. These land trusts demonstrate their commitment to excellence by adopting Land Trust Standards and Practices, the ethical and technical guidelines for the responsible operation of a land trust, and meeting the accreditation requirements drawn from them. Learn More: http://www.landtrustaccreditation.org/about.

Review from Guidestar

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

If you met me, you'd never guess that I've never went on a hike until I was in my 20's (I'm a lover of nature) and my very first hike was at Big Basin. One of the first thoughts that ran across my mind was, "Wow. This is what I've been missing?!" All this in my own backyard (i.e. w/in a 30 mile radius) and to know that a place like this was that close made it that much more special. When I found out there was an organization that has a mission to protect places like Big Basin and the redwoods, it gave me a very comforting feeling. I truly hope Sempervirens will continue to protect these places and the wildlife that cannot protect themselves. Thank you Sempervirens!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Sempervirens is an amazing organization that protects the Coastal Redwoods in the Santa Cruz Mountains. They are responsible for starting some of the best parks in the area such as Big Basin and Castle Rock. These parks and many others that Sempervirens has started not only protect these gigantic majestic trees, but also provide the community with a place to hike, camp, and enjoy nature. Even after protecting all these areas, they are continually working to protect more, both for the better of the environment as well as provide more areas for the public.

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered for Sempervirens a few times now. They are an amazing organization with great staff. Sempervirens started Big Basin as well as many other parks. They are continually creating parks and protected areas to preserve California for generations to come. As an avid outdoors-man, I would not have all the great places to hike, backpack, and camp without the outstanding work that Sempervirens does. If you are looking for an organization to donate your time and money to, you won;t be able to find many origranizations are more worthwhile.

3 Ty K.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

For me, Semper Virens protects the essential parts of our fabulous coastal forests. These huge and beautiful trees provide for every other living member of nature's bounty. I consider the soil, the water and the air to be the living warp and weft of the great fabric we call nature. These redwoods clean the air and water and hold the soil in place in addition to enriching their components. They provide an anchor for the flora and fauna that decorate this carpet of life and give us a gift of peacefulness and beauty that turns our prosaic existence into joyful bliss. The noblest response we can muster is to support this cause with our gifts and energies. To this end Semper Virens is the perfect vehicle of action.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

I've always had a special place in my heart for the redwoods of the coast range in Northern California. The Sempervirens Fund helps protect and preserve this precious resource for our kids and their kids someday. I've been particularly impressed with what Sempervirens has done over the years with Big Basin State Park. I'm an HP employee, and was glad to see Little Basin (which used to be a getaway for HP employees) move into the public domain, with help from the Sempervirens Fund and POST. Keep up the good work!

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Sempervirens Fund has greatly contributed to the creation and expansion of many of the State Parks in the Santa Cruz Mountains. They developed a regional, science-based plan to guide their work to further expand and connect existing protected lands, in order to protect redwood forests, conserve biodiversity and wildlife connectivity, and create more opportunities for compatible public uses of the land in this important bioregion. Sempervirens Fund staff are hard working, dedicated, and innovative; the organization is highly collaborative, and works effectively with diverse groups including local, state, and federal agencies, other conservation organizations, private landowners, and the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band of Ohlone/Costanoan Indians--the native people of the region. I look forward to witnessing the next era of conservation in this region, which I call home.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I love going hiking in the Santa Cruz Mountains. It was amazing to
encounter the beautiful redwoods in Big Basin. And I learned how
Sempervirens Fund was instrumental in protecting these trees back then
and how they continue to protect more of them today. It's such an
important mission and they undertake it with great dedication. I highly
recommend them as a place to donate or volunteer.

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have hiked extensively in the Santa Cruz mountains, but only in the last two years have I realized the importance of Sempervirens Fund in creating the state parks and preserving this wonderful resource for all the people living in Silicon Valley and the surrounding areas.

Since 1900 when Sempervirens Fund was founded, the donations to Sempervirens Fund have create Big Basin Redwoods State Park (the first state park in California), and Castle Rock State Park, and the fund is trying to create an uninterrupted wildlife corridors and an ecological preserve in cooperation with existing land owners, as well as by acquiring land as it becomes available.

This is important to our present as well as to our children's future.

Jim Mott, Oakland, CA