Impact Areas & Outcomes

We invest our financial and human resources in three primary areas to support human wholeness.

1) Movement

Goal: To create and support opportunities for individuals and communities to more readily, meaningfully, and consistently experience nature through activity and movement.

Specific outcomes might include:

  • Increased utilization of trails for walking, hiking, or biking
  • Increased use of movement and nature as preventive health strategies
  • Increased human health through outdoor recreation and movement
  • Increased opportunities to engage with neighbors and community members through outdoor recreation and movement

2) Connection

Goal: To deepen the bonds between people, nature, and one another through immersive engagement with Maine's land and water.

Specific outcomes might include:

  • Creation, promotion, or restoration of parks, trails, gardens, and green spaces
  • The preservation or restoration of landscapes and outdoor spaces where individuals and communities gather, explore, or recreate
  • Increased opportunity for wilderness retreats and multi-day expeditions
  • Increased awareness of, value for, and/or utilization of nearby nature
  • A reconnection with the instinctive bond between human beings and other living systems

3) Nourishment

Goal: To empower daily eating habits that prioritize regional and plant based foods for human and environmental health.

Specific outcomes might include:

  • Creation or increased participation in community gardens and other local food production
  • Increased knowledge and skills related to the selection and preparation of healthy, natural, and/or local foods
  • Changes in individuals' eating habits
  • Affordable, accessible, regional, and nourishing food for all Maine families

Case for Investment*

Human beings are experiencing an unprecedented disconnection from nature. Although human beings have been urbanizing, and then moving indoors, since the introduction of agriculture, social and technological changes in the past three decades have accelerated that change. Among the reasons: the proliferation of electronic communications; poor urban planning and disappearing open space; increased street traffic; diminished importance of the natural world in public and private education; and parental fear magnified by news and entertainment media.

Our disconnection from nature has major implications for our wellness... An expanding body of scientific evidence suggests that nature-deficit disorder contributes to a diminished use of the senses, attention difficulties, conditions of obesity, and higher rates of emotional and physical illnesses. These problems are linked more broadly to what health care experts call the "epidemic of inactivity," and to a devaluing of independent play.

Our disconnection from nature also has major implications for the environment... Research also suggests that the nature-deficit weakens ecological literacy and stewardship of the natural world.

By enhancing the connection between people and the natural environment, we can reverse these alarming trends and increase a mutual flourishing...

*Richard Louv, The Nature Principle