Summer 2019 News Briefs

What’s happening around the Foundation…

ECHO VALLEY CHALLENGE GRANT

The Mabee Foundation has issued a generous Challenge Grant to the Foundation and its donors in support of Echo Valley 2020, our coming renovation of the Canyon campsite used by more than 12,750 campers annually. To receive the grant, we have to meet the challenge of raising $600,000. If you are able to help, call Perri Rosheger, our executive director of constituent relations, at 830-315-9304.

KEVIN WESSELS COMPLETES TEXAS MASTER NATURALIST

This spring, Kevin Wessels, Assistant Director of Stewardship at the H. E. Butt Foundation, became certified as a Texas Master Naturalist. The certification and volunteer program is cosponsored by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension service, is, according to its website, “designed to develop a corps of well-informed volunteers who provide education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities for the State of Texas.” Kevin completed 40 hours of classroom and field training. The designation also requires 40 hours of volunteer service and eight hours of continuing education per year to maintain. The program brings in guest speakers and experts who cover a variety of topics related to general land stewardship.

Kevin says, “It’s a very beneficial thing for my position here at the Foundation. It provided a really great education in Hill Country land stewardship. It informs one’s sense that all the parts are dependent on each other and to have an adequate sense of the whole you have to know all the components.”

FRIO RIVER CANYON HABITAT IMPROVED DURING SEMI-ANNUAL CANYON CARE WORKDAY

At a recent Canyon Care Workday, dozens of Foundation employees from our San Antonio and Kerrville offices joined our Canyon workforce early one morning in the Maintenance Barn. Staffers were divided into teams that took on several day-long projects to help the Property Planning and Stewardship’s objectives. Employees uprooted thousands of invasive malta starthistle plants to prevent them from spreading and outcompeting native plants. Teams picked up trailers full of trash from the property to protect the Canyon. Some re-painted wayfinding signs to help our guests, some fenced in over 30 hardwood trees for future generations to enjoy, and others built 22 bird boxes to supplement natural habitat and improve nesting for our birds.

LAITY LODGE’S LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE GARNERS RECENT ASLA INDUSTRY NOD

Earlier this spring at the 2019 Texas Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects Conference, Austin-based Ten Eyck Landscape Architects, Inc. won an Award of Merit for the sustainable landscape design throughout our Laity Lodge retreat center. The annual award recognizes “outstanding examples of projects that contribute to the quality of life for all citizens of Texas.”

The Latest

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SA Hope Center

Like so many nonprofits, the SA Hope Center has adjusted its operations on the fly during the pandemic and are finding new challenges in supporting families in 2020.

House of Neighborly Service

Sandra Morales hopes donors will remember the people of the West Side, as the pandemic enters the second year.

Restore Education

The pandemic has expanded the need for job training and college readiness programs in San Antonio.

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