Our Mission
Our mission is to engage in protecting and restoring the treasured natural habitats of the Forest Preserves of Cook County and to enhance the outdoor experiences of all communities.

We will do this by encouraging and administering private gifts to further the Forest Preserves’ mission and goals.

The Foundation adopted its first strategic plan in September, 2015 to help guide its growth and impact.

Our annual reports and financial info can be found here.

Founded in 2006, the Forest Preserve Foundation began with the belief that philanthropic giving could best supplement tax dollars that support the visionary goals of the Forest Preserves of Cook County.

In 2012, the Foundation actively started raising private funds, hosting the first Conservation Cup, its annual golf benefit. That year the Foundation granted $3,500 to the Forest Preserves.

In 2018, the Forest Preserve Foundation granted a total of $317,705 during its spring and fall award cycles. These investments in the Forest Preserves of Cook County represent a 56 percent increase from 2017 grant totals.

Over its lifetime, the Foundation has granted $1.3 millon toward its primary goal: increasing access for all to the Forest Preserves of Cook County.


The Forest Preserve Foundation raises funds that support meaningful experiences in the Forest Preserves of Cook County, especially for youth who rarely have the chance to safely play and learn outdoors


Since 2012, the Foundation has granted  $1.3 million to support programs that ease youth and family access to the wonders of the preserves and innovative educational programming.


Keep up with our programs and events by reading our new blog, where we share stories and reflections about the people and many places that makes the Preserves special.

Funding Priorities

The Foundation provides grants to support programs that increase access to the forest preserves for a greater diversity of visitors and deepen their awareness, appreciation and commitment to the health of the preserves. Our funding priorities ​align with the directives of the Forest Preserves of Cook County's Centennial Campaign Plan and Next Century Conservation Plan, which outline the Preserves' goals and strategies for conserving natural habitats over the next 25 years

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