Earth Day Donations: 11 Nonprofits Championing Environmental Sustainability
Environmental sustainability is an ongoing movement, and Earth Day is an excellent reminder of our role in making it a reality.
We’re proud to recognize eleven nonprofit environmental organizations leading the charge. Below, you’ll find out how they plan to rally communities with Earth Day donation and volunteer opportunities, and how that fuels their year-round work to support a cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable planet.
But first, let’s explore why Earth Day is so important.
So, When Is Earth Day 2023?
For most countries worldwide, Earth Day falls on April 22 every year. We celebrate Earth Day as winter transitions to spring, a tradition that started in 1970. In recent years, Earth Day has evolved into Earth Month to continue the celebrations for 30 days.
The Critical Role of Environmental Sustainability Nonprofits
Environmental sustainability is our collective responsibility to protect our ecosystems and preserve our natural resources. The actions we take today will support and protect the well-being of future generations. Thanks to the work of environmental sustainability nonprofits around the world, donors have an outlet to take action and do their part.
But why is environmental sustainability so vital? Consider this snapshot of today’s environmental sustainability stats:
- Each year, a third of the food we produce for human consumption (around 1.3 billion tons) goes to waste—an amount that could have fed 3 billion people.1
- If all greenhouse gas emissions had stopped in 2020, global warming would only begin to slow by around 2033.2
- Roughly 11 million tons of plastic make their way into the oceans every year, harming wildlife habitats and the animals that live in them.3
While all of this might sound bleak, there are actions we can take right now to help our planet—and the organizations below are paving the way.
Earth Day Donations for Environmental Sustainability
Actions that support environmental sustainability include setting new environmental regulations, developing technology through renewable energy, and leaning into eco-friendly living. Earth Day is an excellent time to support these initiatives and the creative ways environmental organizations dedicate their missions to driving change.
1. California State Parks Foundation
Organization Mission: The California State Parks Foundation is an independent, member-supported nonprofit environmental organization dedicated to protecting and preserving the California state park system for the benefit of all.
How California State Parks Foundation Takes Action on Earth Day
At the California State Parks Foundation, Earth Day Climate Action returns each year as a month-long celebration that encourages supporters to become stewards of their local state park. The organization calls on passionate park champions across the state to help clean their local parks, playgrounds, neighborhoods, and backyards.
All participants receive a free DIY Earth Day kit with compostable trash bags, information to properly collect and sort litter in their local community, and some fun stickers. California State Park’s Virtual Earth Day Report helps volunteers track their progress and record their impact for prizes.
Connect with California State Park Foundation:
Hashtags to follow: #CalParksEarthDay, #OptOutside
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram: @calparks and @REI
2. SF Parks Alliance
Organization Mission: The SF Parks Alliance is the only city-wide parks nonprofit in San Francisco. For over 50 years, the alliance has partnered with communities and public agencies to create, sustain, and advocate for parks and public spaces that welcome and belong to everyone.
How SF Parks Alliance Takes Action on Earth Day
Over the last few years, parks across San Francisco have been a lifeline. In 2020, SF Parks Alliance launched its Heart Your Parks campaign, lighting city monuments in green and adding social distancing hearts to parks across the city to acknowledge how important these spaces were during the pandemic.
In 2022, the SF Parks Alliance relaunched the Heart Your Parks campaign to showcase ongoing love and gratitude for these special places. Starting on Earth Day, SF Parks Alliance created 30 hearts in parks across 30 days and raised funds in support of parks.
Connect with SF Parks Alliance:
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram: @SFParksAlliance
3. Fort Greene Park Conservancy
Organization Mission: The Fort Greene Park Conservancy provides programming, maintenance, and advocacy to preserve and nourish Fort Greene Park as a community resource and public space for all New Yorkers for generations to come.
How Fort Greene Park Conservancy Takes Action on Earth Day
Earth Day at Fort Greene Park is a celebration of the natural, open space New Yorkers get the opportunity to share and of the community that loves and sustains it. Throughout all thirty acres of this verdant space within busy Fort Greene, the organization offers ways for supporters to connect with the land and the neighbors they share it with.
From educational tree walks and scavenger hunts to collaborative art projects and volunteer gardening, zero-waste in-person events will provide people of all ages with an opportunity to gather together to give back to the planet that gives so much.
Connect with Fort Greene Park Conservancy:
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram: @fortgreenepark
4. I Love a Clean San Diego County
Organization Mission: I Love A Clean San Diego County leads and inspires the community to conserve and enhance the environment. The organization leads by example, outreach, and local involvement to help residents and businesses build a zero-waste, litter-free, and environmentally-engaged lifestyle.
How I Love a Clean San Diego Takes Action on Earth Day
For the past 20 years, the organization has held a Creek to Bay Cleanup on or around Earth Day to celebrate—and the event returns on April 22, 2023. Supporters and volunteers are invited to join thousands of others in the largest environmental cleanup in San Diego County. Creek to Bay started in 2002 and has since blocked 2.7 million pounds of litter from entering the ocean with the help of 87,000 volunteers.
This year, the organization aims to edge closer to the milestone of 3 million pounds of litter at more than 70 local sites around the region. Donors can also contribute monetarily through one-time gifts or recurring donations on a monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual basis.
Connect with I Love a Clean San Diego:
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram: @ilovecleansd
5. National Forest Foundation
Organization Mission: The National Forest Foundation aims to engage Americans in promoting our National Forests and Grasslands’ health and public enjoyment. They are the leading organization inspiring personal and meaningful connections to our environment through forest conservation efforts and responsible recreation.
How National Forest Foundation Takes Action on Earth Day
The National Forest Foundation is continuing its 50 Million For Our Forests campaign this Earth Day. Since the campaign’s start in 2018, more than 28 million trees have been planted on over 70,000 acres of public National Forest land.
The organization matches every dollar donated with a newly planted tree. They offer supporters the option to pledge one dollar per day for an impact of 365 planted trees by next April.
Connect with National Forest Foundation:
Twitter and Instagram: @nationalforests
6. Farmer’s Footprint
Organization Mission: Farmer’s Footprint is a coalition of farmers, educators, doctors, scientists, and business leaders aiming to expose the human and environmental impacts of chemical farming and offer a path forward through regenerative agricultural practices.
How Farmer’s Footprint Takes Action on Earth Day
In 2022, Farmer’s Footprint used Earth Day as a way to launch its first-ever Garden Club with Farmer Greg. After sharing countless farmer stories, they are calling on their community to make a pledge for Mother Earth by getting their own hands dirty.
The Garden Club was an easy-to-follow, fun, and informative 3-week regenerative gardening course meant for anyone who has the desire to start growing food but feels overwhelmed by the idea of learning how to garden. The goal of the course was to help students think deeper about connecting with the land, developing food security, and ensuring their diet consists of the most nutrient-dense food.
Together, these new ways of thinking create an impact within their own body, home, and community that extends far beyond this Earth Day.
Connect with Farmer’s Footprint:
Facebook and Instagram:@farmersfootprint
LinkedIn: Farmer’s Footprint
YouTube: Farmer’s Footprint
7. Seattle Parks Foundation
Organization Mission: Seattle Parks Foundation partners with the community to champion thriving and equitable parks and public spaces. They have the vision to help visitors feel welcomed and invested in the city’s parks and public spaces, leading to healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities.
How Seattle Parks Foundation Takes Action on Earth Day
In 2022, Seattle Parks Foundation celebrated Earth Day by participating in GiveBIG, Washington state’s campaign that pairs supporters with a network of regional donation opportunities.
Throughout April and May, GiveBig encouraged supporters to donate directly to Seattle Parks Foundation’s GiveBIG campaign, People Powered Parks + Public Spaces, to support public, green space, and civic projects with over 90 community-led partners.
Connect with Seattle Parks Foundation:
Facebook and Instagram:@seattleparksfoundation
LinkedIn: Seattle Parks Foundation
YouTube: Seattle Parks Foundation
8. Amah Mutsun Land Trust
Organization Mission: The Amah Mutsun Land Trust (AMLT) works to restore indigenous land stewardship practices in order to heal the earth and provide opportunities for native peoples to re-engage with their heritages.
How Amah Mutsun Land Trust Takes Action on Earth Day
AMLT encourages volunteers, tribal members, and organization supporters to engage with one of their three most impactful ongoing service programs:
- Volunteer work at the Native Gardens at San Juan Bautista Historic State Park in San Juan Bautista, CA
- Service work at the Mutsun Garden at Pie Ranch in Pescadero, CA
- Tending the ethnobotanical demonstration garden at Castle Rock State Park in Los Gatos, CA
While AMLT encourages people from all backgrounds to become involved in their stewardship work, their primary focus is bringing the Mutsun people (a modern tribe of ancestors from more than 20 distinct indigenous groups) back to their tribal homelands to resume their historical land conservation and environmental protection work.
Connect with Amah Mutsun Land Trust:
Facebook: Amah Mutsun Land Trust
Email: Newsletter signup
9. Ocean Conservancy
Organization Mission: Ocean Conservancy is working with you to protect the ocean from today’s greatest challenges — climate change, plastic pollution, loss of biodiversity, overfishing, and more. They also advance government policies to combat climate change, protect marine habitats, and restore coastal environments.
How Ocean Conservancy Takes Action on Earth Day
Each Earth Day, Ocean Conservancy encourages supporters to take a few critical actions that support the future of our ocean:
- Take action – Write or call your local, state, and federal representatives to urge them to factor the ocean and our coastal communities into their political decision-making and pass policies to fight climate change.
- Tell Congress to fully fund NOAA – Use social media or other communication channels to tell your federal representatives to continue funding the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a critical research and regulatory agency protecting the oceans.
- Help keep plastics out of our ocean – Organize or join a cleanup to remove marine debris and plastic pollution from your local beach, waterway or neighborhood. Download Ocean Conservancy’s Clean Swell app to track the amount and type of trash you collect, which will go towards systemic solutions to the plastic and marine debris challenge.
Connect with Ocean Conservancy:
Facebook and Instagram: @oceanconservancy
LinkedIn: Ocean Conservancy
10. Community Forests International
Organization Mission: Community Forests International creates initiatives and connects existing projects in Canada, Zanzibar, and Mozambique. Their sustainability initiatives focus on “natural climate solutions” and seek to create ethical economic opportunities for native peoples in the world’s forests.
How Community Forests International Takes Action on Earth Day
Community Forests International encourages people to engage in one of their numerous projects throughout the world, including:
Environmentalists and environmental professionals looking to make a difference with their wallets (or who want to stay closer to home this Earth Day) can contribute to the nonprofit’s forest carbon offset program. The program focuses on planting trees in critical forests around the world, supporting the indigenous peoples living in the world’s forests, and conserving mature forests.
Connect with Community Forests International:
YouTube: Community Forests International
11. Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide
Organization Mission: Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW) empowers global communities to advocate for clean air and build a just, sustainable future. ELAW unites attorneys, advocates, and scientists worldwide to support grassroots climate action that transcends borders.
How ELAW Takes Action on Earth Day
Each Earth Day, ELAW publishes a special press release updating supporters and volunteers on its worldwide efforts to bolster climate action.
In addition, the environmental protection organization encourages everyone to learn more about the state of environmental law around the world and advocate for policies that conserve both climate and human justice. They also beseech lawyers and scientists to donate their time to environmental justice causes, providing their valuable expertise to projects that unite the world against climate destruction.
Connect with ELAW:
How Today’s Earth Day Donations Lead to a Brighter Future
The work of environmental sustainability is never done. It takes all of us to come together over many Earth Days, and continue our commitment throughout the year.
Take inspiration from the organizations and environmental groups doing the work on the ground and explore how you can make an impact in your local community. Every small action or donation today supports a cleaner and greener tomorrow.
Organize for Change With Classy
Change-making nonprofits need financial resources to support their missions, and fundraising is a must for any and all environmental groups. But fundraising for nonprofits doesn’t have to be complicated—Classy is making it simpler than ever to raise capital for a good cause.
Our fundraising platform eases the donation process, helps all different types of nonprofits track their campaign progress, and builds initiatives that keep donors engaged in the mission. We’re raised over $5 billion for some of the world’s top nonprofits, and we have what it takes to help your organization make an impact.
Request a demo to get a firsthand look at how Classy can build a second-to-none giving experience for your donors.
- “14 Biggest Environmental Problems of 2023,” Climate Change, Earth.org, last modified January 9, 2023, https://earth.org/the-biggest-environmental-problems-of-our-lifetime/.
- “What Would Happen To The Climate If We Stopped Greenhouse Gas Emissions Today?,” Climate Change, Earth.org, last modified September 1, 2020, https://earth.org/what-would-happen-to-the-climate-if-we-stopped-greenhouse-gas-emissions/.
- “Ocean Plastic Pollution Is On Track to Triple By 2040,” Pollution, Earth.org, last modified August 20, 2020, https://earth.org/ocean-plastic-pollution-on-track-to-triple-by-2040/.
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