The City of Oaks Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and youth development organization closely aligned with Raleigh’s Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources Department. The Foundation runs two programs: “Raleigh, Naturally” land conservation to work with landowners on a voluntary basis for long-term stewardship of important natural areas; and “Give Play” which underwrites scholarships for children from low-income families to participate in summer camps and nature programs. By focusing on land and water conservation as well as connecting youth to nature, we hope to keep green space in a rapidly-growing Raleigh and instill a love of nature for generations to come.

Raleigh, Naturally

We want to conserve many of the City’s remaining natural lands to encourage healthy lifestyles, protect air and water quality, and help Raleigh live up to its “City in a Park” brand. Raleigh has a long history of visionary individuals who understood the economic, social, and environmental value of land conservation. It began in 1887 with Richard Stanhope Pullen donating 66 acres for creation of Pullen Park, North Carolina’s first public park, and it continues to this day with recent donations of land from Peter Williams, Louis Wooten, Jr., Dr. Annie Louise Wilkerson, William and Mary Coker Joslin, and Bob Kellam and Susan Wyatt. While other conservation organizations include Raleigh in their regional, statewide or multistate service areas, the City of Oaks Foundation is the only organization with a focus of working with landowners on conservation of the natural resources that benefit Raleigh, and the Foundation’s priorities are closely aligned with the City’s long-term vision for parks and natural areas.

For landowners interested in a conservation legacy

Donating land or a conservation easement is a big decision and takes time. The first step is to get the facts so you can make informed decisions. The City of Oaks Foundation is here to help. Contact us for what you need to know.

Give Play

The Foundation believes in the principle that a connection to the natural world is fundamental to the health and well being of children. That is best developed through, both, education and first-hand experience. To help get children outdoors and active, we want to remove cost as a barrier for children’s participation in the City’s wide array of nature programs and summer camps. We want more children to have these experiences. Senior staff in Raleigh’s Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources Department estimate 400 families every year cannot afford summer camp and nature program fees. By underwriting a need-based scholarship program, we remove barriers and allow under-resourced children opportunities to safe places to play and grow during the summer while developing healthy habits and a love of nature that last their lifetimes. Through your gifts, you empower children to explore Raleigh’s natural world.

Give Play gift levels

$25 donation enables a child to attend a nature program; $50 donation enables a child to participate in an outdoor educational workshop; $125 donation underwrites a week at summer camp; $250 donation puts siblings in summer camp; $1,000 earns you our eternal gratitude!