Habonim Dror Camp Moshava has received $1.36 million from the State of Maryland to permanently set aside for conservation 230 of the camp’s 270 acres in Harford County through Maryland’s Rural Legacy Program. It is the largest such grant this year.
The Maryland Rural Legacy Program provides the funding necessary to protect large, contiguous tracts of land and other strategic areas from sprawl development and to enhance natural resource, agricultural, forestry and environmental protection through cooperative efforts among state and local governments and land trusts.
The land set aside by Camp Moshava will become part of a greenbelt of forests and farms in Harford County to preserve their cultural heritage and sense of place. It will preserve critical habitat for native plant and wildlife species, support natural resources, and protect forests, wetlands and greenways to buffer the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries from pollution run-off.
The camp will be able to develop the 40 acres outside of the easement to strengthen and expand its infrastructure. The camp Board has determined to use the easement money for capital improvements, staff support and investment.
The $1.36 million grant is the latest in a series of major advancements for the camp. In the last three years, the camp has restructured its Board; appointed its first full-time executive director; and completed a strategic planning process. The camp’s first fundraising campaign has provided the ability to upgrade camp facilities, including improvements to the camp’s swimming pool. Camp enrollment has increased and includes young people from across North America and from as far away as Israel and Tanzania.