The Foundation supports efforts to protect wilderness areas, natural resources, critically-endangered ecosystems; and to create lifelong stewards of the environment. Organizations that combine educational and environmental components take precedence. We are particularly interested in programs that:

  • Ensure the adequate protection, restoration and management of lands and waters of conservation importance for people, wildlife, and ecosystems.
  • Support preservation and protection of endangered natural heritage sites of significance and ensure the long-term sustainability of these regional efforts.
  • Expose youth - future stewards of our environment - to the wonders of our natural world, reconnecting them to nature through firsthand outdoor experiences as well as classroom study, and engaging them as active caretakers of California’s unparalleled resources.
  • Provide technical skills, research, and education to ensure proper stewardship of our environment.
  • Protect Northern Sierra Nevada’s most valuable natural, cultural, and recreational resources, through partnerships that develop and fund strategic approaches that result in long-lasting benefits.
  • Promote access to California’s environmental resources for all Californians, including historically underserved communities.

Featured Initiatives:

The Northern Sierra Partnership |


  • Acres conserved to date: 68,091
  • Other notable accomplishments:
    • "Outdoor classrooms" within a 10-minute walk of every school in Sierra and Plumas counties provide every child the chance to be engaged in quality outdoor learning and the stewardship of his or her local environment.
    • Built 36 miles of trails, 15 trailheads, 18 informational kiosks, 16 picnic areas, and 1 bird viewing platform across the northern Sierra.
    • Restored 6 meadows, 4.7 miles of streams, and 1,245 acres of forest, improving water quality and quantity and reducing the risk of high-intensity wildfires.
Sierra-ButteWhy the northern Sierra Nevada?
Many Californians and Nevadans share a common misunderstanding about the Sierra Nevada; namely, that it is already protected. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. Notwithstanding the beauty and ecological importance of the northern Sierra’s expansive forests, glaciated peaks, deep river canyons, and mountain meadows, only 50% of the land in the northern Sierra above 3,000 feet elevation is in public ownership, compared to over 90% in the rest of the Sierra Nevada.

The Northern Sierra Partnership (NSP) is a collaborative initiative to conserve, restore, and enhance the magnificent natural landscape of the northern Sierra Nevada, and build the foundation for sustainable rural prosperity. We work with private landowners, public agencies, nonprofit groups, and local communities to:

CONSERVE the sweeping natural landscapes that define us as a region;

RESTORE the ecological vitality of our forests, meadows and rivers, and the landscape’s resilience to natural disturbance like fire and flood;

EXPAND opportunities to enjoy the region’s extraordinary natural assets through recreation, sustainable tourism, and environmental education;

SUPPORT the growth of vibrant rural communities that sustain - and are sustained by - the healthy natural landscapes that surround them.

The NSP is comprised of five organizations coordinating strategy, resources and knowledge for maximum impact: Feather River Land Trust, Truckee Donner Land Trust, Sierra Business Council, Trust for Public Land, and The Nature Conservancy. For more information on the Northern Sierra Partnership’s activities and iniatiatives, please visit

Environmental Education: Creating Future Generations of Nature-Lovers and Stewards

Recognizing that a lifelong commitment to enjoying and stewarding outdoor spaces begins with positive, regular, early exposure, MFF is focused on expanding access to nature for children and youth.

Programs we support focus on:

  • Using school-time opportunities to create broad access to high-quality, engaging environmental programming that aligns with Next Generation Science Standards and the California Environmental Literacy Blueprint.
    Grantees include: Environmental Volunteers, Hidden Villa, O’Neill Sea Odyssey, Wildlife Associates, Living Classroom

  • Encouraging diversity in Environmental Education, so the field and its youth participant reflects the demographics of Silicon Valley. Grantees include: Bay Area Wilderness Training, Vida Verde Nature Education, Youth Outside

  • Building the overall capacity of the EE field, so that it is working more effectively and relevantly to accommodate more youth.
    Grantees include: ChangeScale, Environmental Education Funders Collaborative (EEFC), Outdoors Empowered Network, Mt. View-Whisman Collaborative, Bay Area EE Transportation Fund, Blue Sky Funders Forum

  • Equipping youth with the skills needed for hands-on conservation activities.
    Grantees include: Student Conservation Association, Acterra, Canopy


    Program Goals:     Youth  |  Education  |  Environment  |  Stewardship

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