During a recent cool autumn morning commute into Camp Pollock, I found myself distracted by the beauty of this special place.
I paused to take in the magnificence of these 11 acres, with an inhale of the thick and brisk tule fog, juxtaposed against the fiery yellow, orange, and red hues of leaves falling from trees and the gentle flow of the lower American River. I welcomed the feeling of a change in the air.
This year, no doubt, has been one of challenges and changes for us all. For SVC, it’s also been a year of focus and growth. Shortly after completing our annual docent training with more than 50 bright-eyed and excited docents, COVID-19 threatened to cancel our entire Spring outing season on Deer Creek Hills Preserve.
Focusing on how we could best serve the community, we quickly adjusted our schedules, registration and outings protocols to meet COVID precautions, while providing a safe and accessible space; because we know that time in nature is essential for all people. Over the last 10 months we served more than 3,000 attendees at 75 outings for restorative hikes and rides in nature. And, with donor support, we were able to serve 500 more self-guided hikers in 2020 than any previous year.
Even in a pandemic, stewarding open space remains essential. Sacramento Valley Conservancy’s stewardship staff and biological consultants continued to monitor, manage, and steward the land to the same high standard as always.
As our climate continues to change we are adapting our strategies and management practices to promote more flood and fire resilient landscapes. SVC’s farming and ranching partners, who rely on land owned and under easements by the Conservancy, continued their essential service working the land to feed our region and beyond.
Major Camp Pollock site improvements began in September and with the help of generous donors, together we raised $45,000 to purchase and install a tiny house in just three months.
These facility improvements ensure that Camp Pollock will continue to be managed as one of the only free, safe, and family-friendly spaces on the lower American River. This project was one of many silver linings of 2020. We couldn’t have done it without the tremendous support from dedicated and generous supporters like you.
In November, after more than a year-long review process, SVC was awarded a renewal of accreditation by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission. Less than 1/3 of land trusts nationwide have received this honorable recognition, which assures our supporters that we continue to demonstrate responsible governance, sound finances, ethical conduct, and lasting stewardship.
Through the many challenges and changes this year brought, your support helped us stay the course, with our priorities fixed on the mission of the organization: to protect the beauty, character and biodiversity of the valley. We continue to work on a number of acquisition projects that span the four corners of our 21st Century Vision map.
Thank you for valuing environmental conservation here in the Sacramento Valley. Your support has allowed us to continue working steadfast towards SVC’s vision to permanently protect a network of natural and working landscapes.
Please take a moment to make your year-end donation to the Sacramento Valley Conservancy to support open space for all in 2021.
With deep gratitude,
Sacramento Valley Conservancy