October 15, 2021

The donor has committed $500,000 to help the nonprofit pay back a loan used to purchase the properties

North Florida Land Trust is one step closer to raising the money they need to pay off a loan used to purchase a portion of the Little NaNa Dune System in American Beach. An anonymous donor has committed $500,000 to NFLT to help pay back the loan taken out to purchase three parcels to keep them free from development and to protect the natural landscape of the historic town. The anonymous donation, donations from the community and a challenge grant issued by the Delores Barr Weaver Fund which has recently been met have brought NFLT closer to the $1.305 needed. The nonprofit must raise $150,000 more to reach its fundraising target.

“We are very grateful to the donor for giving us this large sum to get us closer to our goal. We also thank all others who have stepped up to help, especially the Delores Barr Weaver Fund,” said Jim McCarthy, president of NFLT. “Protecting this land was very important to maintain the history and culture of American Beach and to protect the natural landscape. It is an important habitat for gopher tortoises and migrating birds. We are asking individuals, businesses, foundations and other organizations to donate to help us raise the remaining money needed to pay off the loan and reach our goal.”

Protecting this portion of the Little NaNa Dune connects the 1.55 acres to the 8.5- acre NaNa Dune, the tallest dune in Florida which was added to the National Park Service’s Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve in 2004. NFLT closed on the three properties in January of this year and was given one year to raise the money to pay off the loan. NFLT typically fundraises and has the money in place before the acquisition but the agreement with the property owners required NFLT to close on the parcels within 90 days.

NFLT has been raising money through the Amelia Forever campaign which was created in 2019 to preserve the remaining natural spaces on Amelia Island. To donate, visit www.nflt.org/ameliaforever or send a check to North Florida Land Trust with the memo: Amelia Forever to 843 W Monroe Street, Jacksonville FL 32202. For more information about giving, contact the NFLT office at 904-479-1967 or info@nflt.org.

American Beach was founded in 1935 to give African Americans access to a beach during the days of segregation. In 2002, the original beach property was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and the American Beach Museum opened in 2014.

About North Florida Land Trust

North Florida Land Trust is a not-for-profit organization that seeks to protect the natural resources, historic places and working lands (farms and ranches) throughout north Florida. Founded in 1999, NFLT has preserved tens of thousands of acres of land through donation or purchase of land as well as conservation easements.  NFLT is funded largely by private and corporate contributions and works closely with willing landowners and public agencies at all levels of government, not-for-profit partners, and foundations.