Preparing the new land for prairie restoration, April 2014.
The Wisdom Prairie Project, our current $1.9 million campaign to acquire and restore an additional 53 acres to native prairie and oak savanna, has experienced some great momentum in the past couple months. We have now raised $1,640,000 and have $260,000 to go.
A member of our oblate community donated $25,000 to the project in honor of her late mother and step-father. Her mother used to enjoy walking on the grounds here.
We also received a generous grant of $30,000 from the Madison Community Foundation, which encourages, facilitat
es and manages long-term philanthropy.
“The Madison Community Foundation’s Board is pleased to support the restoration of native prairie and oak savannah on the Holy Wisdom Monastery land,” said Bob Sorge, president of the Madison Community Foundation. “This is a great project that aligns with MCF’s interests: the ecological restoration will further help the Yahara watershed; the project expands a prior project funded by MCF; and it enhances the recreational opportunities available for the general public. I hope people take advantage of this wonderful new asset for Dane County.”
We are also honored that the board of the Town of Westport authorized a $35,000 gift over three years to support the Wisdom Prairie Project.“The Town of Westport is pleased to call Holy Wisdom Monastery a neighbor,” said Thomas G. Wilson, administrator for the Town of Westport. “We share a similar vision of using our land in a way that conserves open space and reduces phosphorous runoff from ending up in Lake Mendota and the Yahara River watershed. It is essential for us to celebrate and invest in a project like this which also maintains great open space and creates recreational opportunities in Westport.”
The support for this project so far has been inspiring. Each of the 250 donors to the project (and 170 in 2014 alone) are making a statement that prairie restoration and conserving open space is important. If you would like to be a part of this effort, you can make a donation online or attend the Prairie Rhapsody benefit concert on June 19, 2014 to show your support. You can also become a Friend of Wisdom Prairie by visiting this webpage or by contacting Greg Armstrong at 608-836-1631, x123 or friends@benedictinewomen.
We look forward to sharing more news with you as this effort progresses. Look for more details soon on a ground blessing this fall as well as volunteer opportunities to help seed the new prairie.