From the mountain peak to your neighborhood park, from glacier to garden, and from a backyard stream to the mighty ocean, Columbia is dedicated to helping preserve your favorite places for outdoor adventure. We partner with a variety of conservation-focused nonprofits, providing annual product and cash donations, to help realize our shared goal of conserving the outdoors. Some of our current partnerships include:
The Conservation Alliance
The Conservation Alliance is a group of outdoor industry companies that disburses its collective annual membership dues to grassroots environmental organizations. As a Pinnacle Level Member, Columbia contributes $100,000 annually to The Conservation Alliance and their mission to protect wild places for their habitat and recreational values. Additionally, Columbia employees have the opportunity to vote on which Conservation Alliance projects they would like to see funded bi-annually, influencing final funding decisions.
Since its inception in 1989, the Alliance has contributed close to $13 million to grassroots conservation groups throughout North America. The results of their funding have been remarkable helping save more than 42 million acres of wildlands; protect 2,825 miles of rivers; designate five marine reserves; and purchase nine climbing areas. We are honored to collaborate with outdoor industry companies across North America through The Conservation Alliance in order to accomplish meaningful conservation work.
Grassroots Outdoor Alliance: Belay Grant Program
Columbia annually partners with the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance (Grassroots), a group of independent outdoor retailers across North America, to identify local conservation and outdoor education projects most in need of grant funding through the Columbia/Grassroots Belay Grant Program. Working with our specialty retailer partners allows us to identify the most impactful nonprofit partners and projects that will best serve our communities. Past funded projects include youth climbing camps, tallgrass prairie restoration, and national park conservation work.
Since the grant program was established in 2012, Columbia has provided over $400,000 in the form of cash and product donations to more than 85 local nonprofit projects identified by Grassroots members. The cash received by nonprofits is often used to cover supplies and programming costs, while Columbia product donated can be added to gear libraries or help protect staff while leading outdoor trips.
Grassroots and Columbia share a mission of promoting long-term environmental good for the great outdoors on local, national and global levels. We look forward to a continued partnership and commitment to conserving the outdoors together.
The Ocean Foundation
Columbia has partnered with The Ocean Foundation since 2010, providing cash and product donations to support their marine habitat conservation efforts around the world. Examples of recent supported projects include sea turtle monitoring in Cuba, coastal conservation education for elementary students in San Diego, California, and marine biology training for indigenous communities in Mozambique, Panama, Mexico, and Australia.
As proud supporters of the SeaGrass Grow campaign, Columbia was one of the first outdoor industry companies to recognize the critical importance of seagrass to marine ecosystems. Seagrass beds are home to dozens of animals, including fish, shellfish, eels, and seahorses; in fact, 70% of marine life is dependent on seagrass at some stage in their life cycle. Seagrasses play an important role in sequestering carbon in the oceans. Their leaf systems and root structures help stabilize the sea floor, which helps to protect the coastlines during storms. However, boat groundings, propeller scarring, ill-placed development, and other human activities have damaged the world's seagrass meadows. According to a recent release from the United Nations Environment Programme, over 30 percent of seagrass meadows have been lost since the 1940s. Through monetary and product donations, Columbia actively works with The Ocean Foundation to enable continued restoration of seagrass.
American Hiking Society: National Trails Day
As a long-term partner of American Hiking Society and official sponsor of National Trails Day®, Columbia is proud to support the only national organization that promotes and protects foot trails, their surrounding natural areas, and the hiking experience. As a national voice for hikers, American Hiking Society champions conservation issues, builds public and private partnerships, supports volunteer stewardship, and provides critical resources to help plan, fund, and develop trails.
Columbia supports American Hiking Society through product donations for programmatic needs and cash contributions. We encourage our customers, employees, and friends to support National Trails Day®, the first Saturday in June, by joining an event or stewardship project. To learn more about National Trails Day® visit http://www.nationaltrailsday.americanhiking.org.