Lakeland Awards $25,000 to Support Walking and Hiking Trail
Jan 22, 2018 Share

(NILES) – Lakeland Health recently awarded $25,000 to Fernwood Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve in support of a walking and hiking trail improvement project. Funds were awarded from the Lakeland Health Community Wellness Endowment, established in 2014 to help sponsor local organizations that promote community health. To date the endowment has awarded more than $500,000.

 “The goal of the Community Wellness Endowment is to support area organizations who work to improve access to preventative care and health outcomes of our community,” said Brandi Smith-Gordon, Vice President of Philanthropy and President, Lakeland Health Foundations. “This most recent grant awarded to Fernwood aligns with this mission and offers area residents of all ages a local and affordable way to stay active.”

“On behalf of all at Fernwood, I extend our great thanks to Lakeland Health for this very generous grant that will allow us to improve our trails, expand and enhance our interpretation and signage, and strengthen our existing wellness program for the community,” said Carol Line, Executive Director, Fernwood Botanical Garden.

Initiatives supported by the Community Wellness Endowment must be sponsored by non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations that serve populations integral to Lakeland Health service areas of Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren counties in southwest Michigan. Support must be focused on existing programs, new initiatives and/or capital needs. The next round of grants will be awarded in March, with applications due by Thursday, March 8. For more information, or to complete an application, visit

Your generosity can make a difference.