Operating reserve funds are the roots and foundation of a non-profit organization—not often seen but necessary and vital. The Montana Natural History Center currently has an incredible opportunity to cultivate our roots and grow our operating reserve thanks to a generous challenge grant from The Kendeda Fund. We hope you’ll join us in growing our roots and helping our beautiful tree to thrive for future generations.
With the strong foundation of a well-funded operating reserve, MNHC leadership, board, and staff will have the capacity and leverage to be strategic and assertive in our organizational decision-making. One example of what could be possible: expanding the reach of our nature-based science programming to serve an increasing number of people throughout the state of Montana and beyond.
For the past 30 years, MNHC has served an important and unique role in Montana conservation: connecting people of all ages with the natural world and educating them about the intricacies and beauties of natural systems, leading them to a greater appreciation and understanding of nature and creating stewards for present and future generations.
When we learn about the natural world, we feel more connected to these ecosystems, and we are far more likely to understand the importance of protecting them. Through all MNHC’s programs, such as Master Naturalist for adults, Visiting Naturalist in the Schools for 4th and 5th graders, and miniNaturalist for preschoolers, MNHC cultivates those roots of appreciation, knowledge, and environmental mindfulness.
Despite the difficulties of operating during the pandemic, our staff pivoted quickly and developed myriad ways to reach more people than ever before. For example, our teaching naturalists customized the Visiting Naturalist in the Schools program for teachers and students to be able to deliver content both virtually and in person in a safe and engaging way. We want to keep that momentum going, using the lessons we learned and the tools we developed during the pandemic to expand our reach throughout Montana and beyond.
As the landscape of our community changes, now is the time to invest in a sustainably minded future—one that continues to protect the unique ecosystems that make Montana special. During this time of transformation, the Montana Natural History Center is partnering with The Kendeda Fund to raise more than $300,000 as a healthy reserve to solidify our next 30 years of connecting people with nature.
To date we have raised $250,000 in matched donations. We are asking you, dear supporter, to help us get to the finish line. Every gift from our supporters from now until the end of 2022 will be matched dollar for dollar by The Kendeda Fund, doubling the impact on the Montana Natural History Center, its programs, its staff, and our Montana community. Your investment in the future will leave the next generation a financially secure organization and directly ensure MNHC’s ability to continue to be a leader in nature-based science education throughout Montana and beyond.
Thank you, friends, volunteers, board members, supporters, and community members. We couldn’t do this without you.