Jelks Family Foundation awards $25,000 grant to Conservation Foundation of Gulf Coast

Funds to be held by Conservation Foundation to assist with purchases of Manatee County land considered to be a high priority

This is a setting in the Miakka Headwaters Preserve in Manatee County. Contributed photo by Mary Lundeberg for the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast

The Jelks Family Foundation recently awarded a $25,000 grant to the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast for the conservation of Manatee County land classified as a high priority, the Conservation Foundation has announced.

The grant will be held in the Conservation Foundation’s revolving Land Fund, a news release explains. “Established in 2017, the Land Fund is used to quicken the pace of land conservation when other public and private funding resources are unavailable,” the release points out.

The Conservation Foundation Board of Trustees oversees the use of the Land Fund “to conserve priority land based on staff’s recommendation of the property’s ranking against scientific criteria,” the release notes. Utilization of the Land Fund allows the Conservation Foundation “to act quickly in hot real estate markets when time is of the essence,” the release says.

“Land conservation is expensive and urgent,” Christine P. Johnson, president of the Conservation Foundation, pointed out in the release. “We are incredibly grateful to the Jelks Family Foundation for strengthening our available resources and investing in our mission.”

To date, the Conservation Foundation has protected more than 18,500 acres across 48 properties in five counties, the release adds. Of those 18,500 acres, 1,794 are in Manatee County.

Learn more about the Conservation Foundation and its mission at