How Do You Gift Wrap Fresh Air, Open Fields, and Babbling Brooks?

Ridge and Valley Conservancy
2018 Year-End Appeal

There is still time to put a bow on it!
There is still time to give the gift of preserved natural lands and protected wildlife and plant habitats. There is still time to give the gift of scenic views and towering forests. There is still time to give the gift of connecting with the land and exploring the wonder of nature. 

Message from Susi Tilley, Executive Director

My co-worker Kate recently shared a powerful Brene Brown quote with me, “Unused creativity is not benign. It metastasizes. It turns into grief, rage, judgment, sorrow, shame.” 

This got me thinking. How do I use my creativity to live a life that is fulfilled, and do I transform all those negatives mentioned in the quote? I have a simple answer: Nature, and the work that I do! 

I am lucky enough to live near open space. A natural setting where I can breathe clean air and from which I can draw solace and inspiration. Among the experiences that bring me joy is introducing people to the beauty and wonder of the natural world. Witnessing others experience that deep connection with nature is powerful. It is what inspires me to preserve natural lands and engage people with the natural world.

As my first year as executive director for Ridge and Valley Conservancy draws to a close, I have been reflecting on how fortunate I am to do creative and meaningful work that I love, in the region that I love. My RVC role allows me to give back to the community by creating and facilitating programs that help individuals tap into their own creativity using the inspiration of the land around them. Mindful meditation and forest bathing allow participants to experience the colors, sounds, smells, and beauty of a forest. Writing in the woods allows for reflection on and observation of the never-ending cycle of life and death. Teaching women to take care of lands they have inherited connects them with their family story. When hiking, kayaking, biking, participating in a yoga class or engaging in other physical outdoor activity our senses get heightened, blood starts flowing and we feel a sense of joy that allows us to overcome challenges in our life. While painting or photographing nature, we connect to the sweet spot of single-minded concentration that allows for artistic expression.

Fishing connects us to the tranquility of water and what is below the surface. Observing a butterfly leads to reflection on the miracle of transformation from caterpillar to monarch. Nature sparks our creativity and gives us a sense of peace and healing.

RVC’s mission is to protect natural areas for the benefit of people, wildlife and native plants. We believe that our work fosters opportunities for individuals to connect to the land in real and meaningful ways. We invite you to become part of it. Come, take a walk in the woods, explore the trails, play, connect and heal! Bring your dog, loved ones, children and grandchildren. Support us by engaging in all that we have to offer and, if it brings you joy, consider joining us as members or by making a donation. 

RVC relies on the contributions of those passionate about preserving our natural lands. We hope that you will consider investing in our work and in the beauty of the region that surrounds us. We greatly appreciate every donation, no gift is too small to help us make a difference. 

If possible, please consider joining our Ridgetop Circle donors. For $3 a day over a five-year period, you will reach this $5,000 giving level which entitles you to additional membership benefits and event opportunities. 

For current members who have already donated in 2018, perhaps you might be able to make an additional end-of-year gift.

We welcome you to be part of our family of “creative conservationists.”

I hope to see you in the woods, very soon!