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What We Do

A photo of Forest Service International Programs staff member Jo Santiago holding Freedom, a bald eagle.

As part of a unique partnership with the American Eagle Foundation, U.S. Forest Service International Programs staff member Jo Santiago features Freedom, a bald eagle, in presentations to urban schools, women’s shelters, and veterans groups. International migratory species, including some eagles and other raptors, go across boundaries to other countries where habitat may not be well protected. This inspiring presentation illustrates the importance of conserving habitat for all international migratory species—both here and abroad. Photo credit: Karin Theophile

Partnerships are at the very core of how the U.S. Forest Service does business.  They address mutual interests on a range of topics as broad as the agency mission itself. That mission includes overseeing the nation’s 193 million acres of National Forests and Grasslands, working with States, Tribes, domestic and international community groups, and nonindustrial private landowners to help sustain healthy forests and protect the environment.  Thus, there are partnerships that address almost every aspect of land management, scientific research and policy related to forests.  This collaboration means that communities—and their perspectives—are incorporated into the work. The relationships that develop with partners ensure that the Forest Service is pursuing the right work in the right place at the right time. 

Partnerships also help the Forest Service complete its work by leveraging in kind contributions or funding to high-priority projects and areas of interest. There are more than 20,000 partnerships involving grants and formal agreements which contribute significant resources for Forest Service work.

A few examples of innovative, collaborative Forest Service partnerships include:

  • Through a partnership with the Coca Cola Foundation, efforts are underway on the Angeles National Forest in California, the Carson National Forest in New Mexico, and on the Midewin Tallgrass Prairie in Illinois to restore critical watersheds which provide water to tens of thousands of area residents. 
  • In partnership with National Forest Foundation, the U.S. Forest Service is collaborating on a Public Broadcasting System mini-series, “Travels with Darley.” The new series will reach millions of viewers on-air and online to raise awareness of the importance of public lands and to promote recreational and stewardship activities accessible to people of all ages and abilities. 
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