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Celebrating 30 Years of Caring for God's Creation

We look forward to entering our fourth decade of educating for creation care, restoring the land, and renewing spirits at the preserve. We have grown tremendously in just the past 10 years - here's some of what we've accomplished:

  • Flat Iron Lake Preserve became part of our property.
  • Several new research projects were initiated, involving dozens of Calvin students.
  • Two new species made their home in the preserve (coyotes and gray foxes).
  • A bioswale was installed in collaboration with Plaster Creek Stewards.
  • Critters & Company and Spring Break educational programs were established.
  • Wetlands & Woodlands summer camp enrollment doubled.

Our Goal

While we are celebrating our successes in fulfilling our mission, we are also looking toward sustaining our financial future long-term. We pride ourselves on making the Ecosystem Preserve affordable to everyone in the greater Grand Rapids community. The public is welcome to explore the preserve and Bunker Interpretive Center for free. We are pleased to provide our quality educational programs to the community for free or at reasonable rates. But, income from our programming and native plant sale only covers about 15% of our expenses. Our goal is to fund a substantial endowment that will permanently sustain the educational programs offered, the flora and fauna inhabiting the land, and the operation expenses essential to retaining the vitality of the Ecosystem Preserve.

Community Investments Securing Our Future

Donors have already begun to help us close the gap and reach our endowment goal. The Harry A. & Margaret D. Towsley Foundation and The Loutit Foundation have both supported us with gifts to our endowment. We are grateful for these generous contributions, and elated to be advancing toward preserving our future!

If you have enjoyed using the preserve, please consider giving to our endowment. Here are 3 great reasons to donate:

  1. Your contribution will keep visits to the preserve trails free for the community, and keep educational programs affordable for thousands of youth, adults, and families.
  2. Your contribution will continue the research and restoration that is vital to our conservation efforts, and maintain a healthy habitat for the hundreds of diverse plant and animal species that live here.
  3. Your contribution will continue to develop Calvin students into environmental leaders through practical work experience and mentoring, and provide a site for hundreds of Calvin students to attend class, conduct research, and be inspired.

All gifts of all sizes work together to make a big impact. You can help ensure that we leave nature for the next generation.

Donate Today!

Show Your Support

Donate Today!

Prefer to write a check? Please make it payable to Calvin College, put "Ecosystem Preserve Endowment" on the memo line, and mail it to our address.

For other types of financial gift opportunities (such as stock, etc.), please contact the Planned Giving Office at (616)526-6090.

National Christian Foundation (NCF)

Do you have an NCF donor account? We are an NCF listed charity - find us under "Calvin College Ecosystem Preserve."

National Christian Foundation of West Michigan

Additional Info

This project supports the Calvin 2019 Strategic Plan in the areas of "Strengthening Calvin's Mission in Education and Scholarship," "Securing Calvin's Financial Future," and "Supporting Calvin's Mission through External Partnerships."

Charity Navigator

The Ecosystem Preserve is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity. Donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.