Best practices for maps used in fundraising, communications, management
While GIS can be used for conservation priorities and project work, it has equal value for the other side of what land trusts do: fundraise, communicate with the public and manage organizational affairs.
Fundraising: For individual donors, maps can be a terrific aid in securing and maintaining their support. Doing this well usually requires some investment in graphic design, however - particularly in a high quality regional service area (or "turf") map.
With foundations, good GIS maps can make a stronger case about the nature of properties proposed for acquisition, or about the important natural or cultural qualities of your landscape. A carefully done project strategy map showing other protected lands and natural resources that demonstrate the value of a proposed project can win the day with funders.
Communications: Informing the press of your work is a task that is greatly helped by clear project and turf maps. These can be done poster size for press events, page size as attachments to press releases, or in digital format (JPG, GIF or Acrobat file) for direct use by the news outlet.
Management: GIS can help with management tasks within a land trust. In addition to tracking the status of each land holding (from which reports can be prepared), GIS can also be used to create related databases of special project sites, hikes and special events, volunteer locations or service, etc. LEARN MORE about GIS and project management...