Aspen-area nonprofit secures $72k grant from Great Outdoors Colorado |

Aspen-area nonprofit secures $72k grant from Great Outdoors Colorado

Staff report

Aspen Valley Land Trust received a grant earlier this month that will allow it to enhance stewardship of properties it has conserved between Aspen and DeBeque.

AVLT received a $72,500 grant from Great Outdoors Colorado. It will allow the Carbondale-based nonprofit organization to create a new conservation easement position.

“This grant will expand AVLT’s capacity to conduct monitoring visits, restoration projects and improvements to community spaces, critical as AVLT continues to conserve more land and engage the community with conserved places,” the nonprofit organization said in a news release.

AVLT has conserved more than 44,000 acres in Pitkin, Eagle and Garfield counties. It currently has one full-time stewardship director who is responsible for restoration projects, landowner relationships, community partnerships and maintenance of its parks, outdoor education and community spaces.

“The pandemic has placed incredible pressure on our trails and outdoor spaces, and this grant will help us address that along with our existing goals to care for and restore conserved lands,” AVLT executive director Suzanne Stephens said in a prepared statement.

GoCo said the grant was part of its Resilient Communities program, which helps recipients advance outdoor recreation, stewardship and land protection. Funded projects respond to one-time, immediate needs or opportunities that have emerged in direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic within GoCo’s parameters.