2022 Annual Report
Building on Success
In 2022, we made significant progress in our work to support Maine communities, protect plants and animals, secure access to the coast for more people, and build the coast’s resilience in a changing climate.
You joined thousands of supporters giving to Maine Coast Heritage Trust to make this work possible. Thank you! Through your generosity and strong partnerships with other organizations across the state we were able to conserve 36 places in a single year, including five projects within our Rivers Initiative and five projects within our Marshes for Tomorrow Initiative.
Together we conserved 36 new places, totaling 4,161 acres, and monitored and cared for 43,346 acres of land.
More places conserved
36 places comprise 4,161 newly protected acres (that’s greater than the size of Hallowell) and include 28 miles of shoreline (the distance from Portland to Brunswick). Fifteen of the 36 places conserved represent partnership projects.
More lands cared for
Our stewardship staff monitored and cared for 43,346 acres (that’s about the size of the town of Boothbay) in 2022, including maintaining over 100 miles of trail (the distance from Kittery to Damariscotta).
Click the arrows, below, to see 2022 highlights.
Hundreds joined us for the “Meet the Marsh” event at Cousins River Fields and Marsh in Yarmouth in November. MCHT associate director of stewardship Amanda Devine led event attendees down in the marsh, where she explained how protection of the wetlands and surrounding uplands makes it possible for the marsh to migrate as sea level rises, keeping highly valuable habitat intact. Photo by Chris Bennett Photography. Photo by Chris Bennett Photography.
The Maine Land Trust Network, a program of MCHT, organized regional events to educate legislative candidates about the work of land trusts and the community benefits of conservation. One event, pictured here, was held at Pondicherry Park in Bridgton and attracted folks from Western Maine. Photo by Maggie Lynn.
MCHT land steward Kirk Gentalen (who took this photo!) led nature walks at MCHT preserves and wrote about his Midcoast adventures in his popular column “Nature Bummin’.” In the summer of 2022 he saw numerous nested Red Crossbills, a species typically spotted in Maine in the winter. Learn more: mcht.org/nature-bummin.
The Aldermere and Erickson Campaign, which kicked off in 2022 and continues through 2023, will add critical new infrastructure to our agricultural preserves in Rockport. Here, cows frolic in a field before what will be the new barn and visitor center at Aldermere Farm, a project made through the campaign. This new structure will allow us to continue to serve the community and provide exceptional educational programming opportunities. MCHT photo.
MCHT conserved a small waterfront parcel with a boat launch just across the harbor from Stave Island Preserve, improving access to this beautiful island experience and Frenchman Bay at large. MCHT photo.
Members of Color of Change, a Portland-based nonprofit group of young climate-change activists, spent a day with MCHT and Maine Beer Company on recently protected Little Whaleboat island in Casco Bay. MCHT photo.
We collaborated with the town of Brunswick and Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust to help conserve 41 acres of undeveloped shoreline on the Androscoggin River. This project allows for the expansion of a town park to include a lovely new detour off an established bike and pedestrian path. MCHT photo.
MCHT accepted the fee transfer of the Mason Bay Conservation Area from Pleasant River Wildlife Foundation. The property includes 639 upland acres, 260 fresh and saltwater wetland acres, and over five miles of shorefront, including wildlife-rich salt marsh and mudflats in Jonesport and Jonesboro. Over the next several years, MCHT will work to protect the bay’s ecology and upgrade public access in key areas—stay tuned! Photo by Ken Woisard Photography.
MCHT staff, seasonal crew members, and volunteers added two sets of stone steps at Boot Head Preserve on the Bold Coast. The preserve has soft, peaty soils, and, with increased visitation at the preserve, it’s become necessary to harden added sections of Boot head’s trails. Harvesting and transporting lumber and heavy stones is quite labor intensive! Visitors can help protect fragile soils by keeping the trail tread narrow and using bog bridging and rock steps when provided. Photo by Wayne Bernard.
A collaborative conservation effort on Mount Desert Island resulted in the protection of 70 acres of ecologically significant land on Babson Creek, and ensured its continued use by students of The Community School. Photo courtesy of The Community School of Mount Desert Island.
Your support made so much possible!
Workshops, field trips, and community events
We were able to coordinate over 60 educational workshops and field trips, over 40 community events, and over 10 donor events, serving over 4,500 attendees in total.
Hosted 55 participants from 30 organizations at an Accessibility Workshop. In total, MCHT’s Land Trust Program offered 23 events with over 1,100 participants.
Healthier coastal rivers
Completed 5 more projects as part of our Rivers Initiative to enhance the coast’s resilience in a changing climate.
Completed 5 more projects as part of our Marshes for Tomorrow Initiative to conserve essential habitat in a changing climate.
Food for the community
Donated 17,450 pounds of fresh produce from Erickson Fields and 1,635 pounds of hamburger from Aldermere Farm to local hunger relief organizations.
To enhance programming at MCHT preserves, we built one barn, began restoration of another barn (see above!), and broke ground on a new barn and visitor center (at Aldermere Farm).
Added 9 new MCHT preserves and expanded 3 existing preserves by 772 acres. Also conserved 2 more islands.
Interns at work
Supported 10 conservation interns working for land trusts throughout the state
Donations by the numbers
4,051 people gave to MCHT in 2022, with 680 giving for the first time. Welcome to MCHT! We’re so happy to have you.
351 people gave monthly, which helps us be more proactive and strategic in our conservation work. We’re grateful to have 750 people giving at The President’s Circle level, and 351 donors aged 50 and under supporting this work as members of MCHT’s Next Wave.
Every dollar donated supports MCHT’s mission
- Mitigate the impacts of climate change
- Protect plants and animals
- Expand access to the coast
- Serve Maine communities
The Maine coast is a world treasure worth caring for, and we’re on a mission to keep it open, healthy, working, and beautiful.
Maine Coast Heritage Trust (MCHT) is a nonprofit land conservation organization protecting and caring for vital coastal lands. We’re partnering with individuals, businesses, organizations, and communities to conserve iconic islands, critical wildlife habitat, coastal watersheds, water access sites, downtown greenspaces, and beautiful places for people to explore. Our Land Trust Program supports and strengthens Maine’s entire land conservation community of over 80 land trusts.
Generosity in Action, 2022
We value your gift to Maine Coast Heritage Trust, and we’re making sure it goes as far as possible for the Maine coast. For every $10 MCHT spent in 2022, $9 went directly to protecting and caring for coastal lands and islands and connecting people to the coast.
Where funds come from
- Private Restricted Contributions & Grants (54%)
- Investment Draw (23%)
- Annual Fund (17%)
- Public Restricted Grants (3%)
- Other Revenue (3%)
The above represents a summary of how your generous contributions were spent during 2022 and the sources of funds applied. Our 2022 audited financial statements and Form 990 will be available later in 2023. A complete set of MCHT’s 2021 audited financial statements are available at mcht.org/financials.
Thank you, donors!
Your donation to MCHT sustains lives and livelihoods and empowers people and organizations across Maine to conserve our common ground.
Thanks, again, for all you made possible for the coast and beyond in 2022.
“While preserving and protecting Maine’s shoreline and islands are central to MCHT’s mission, so too are our efforts around community conservation.
Whether it’s partnering with working waterfronts, creating programs that reveal the wonders of Maine’s coast, or restoring Wabanaki access to land that they have lived with for generations, MCHT does a wonderful job creating space for the human relationship to and with the coast and the sea.
To me, that is the essence of ‘conservation,’ and it is hard to imagine a more worthwhile endeavor.”