70 Years of Impact

The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI)

SPNI is the largest nature conservation organization in Israel and among the oldest in the world. Founded in 1953, only five years after the nation was born, by a determined group of teachers, scientists, and others who fought to save the Hula Wetlands. Since then, SPNI has been successfully protecting and preserving Israel’s natural resources, environment, biodiversity, and unique landscape for future generations.

The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI)

SPNI is the largest nature conservation organization in Israel and among the oldest in the world. Founded in 1953, only five years after the nation was born, by a determined group of teachers, scientists, and others who fought to save the Hula Wetlands. Since then, SPNI has been successfully protecting and preserving Israel’s natural resources, environment, biodiversity, and unique landscape for future generations.

Our History

Pioneering for the Environment Through Israel’s Rapid Development Phase

Perhaps the greatest legacy of SPNI’s fifty years, however, is the identification and designation of the lands that have become Israel’s extraordinary Parks and Preserves system. Since then SPNI created a network of field schools, where Israelis and tourists have participated in guided hikes and nature educations program and tours throughout the country, for school children of all ages and for immigrants in their native languages.

Pioneering Environmental Education in Public Schools Across the Country

Another of SPNI’s earliest – and best-known – campaigns revolved around the protection of Israel’s wildflowers. Using a combination of legal means and educational measures, the organization managed to completely stop the widespread habit of flower picking – once and for all. This legendary campaign worked because it revolved around environmental education for children – the children taught their parents – and Israel was transformed. This initiative was so popular that it triggered the formation of SPNI’s Environmental Education division, which operates in schools across Israel today.

Pioneering Sustainable Alternatives Today

Today, however, the primary danger to nature in Israel is not the picking of wildflowers, but rather the fact that there may no longer be any land left where these flowers can grow! The acute shortage of open landscapes in Israel, currently one of the world’s most densely populated countries, has led the SPNI to stand at the forefront of the struggle to prevent the destruction of unique ecosystems, scenic landscapes, open spaces, and sandy coastlines through short-sighted and unwise development.

But rather than protest every dangerous new project, SPNI has changed the planning process in Israel. Rather than wait for SPNI to object to plans that threaten the environment, the government and private developers now work with SPNI’s urban planners, architects, and GIS experts to develop sustainable plans with the participation of local residents.

Engaging People in Our Mission

Seventy years later, SPNI is still blazing the trail for nature and the environment in Israel. Tens of thousands of households are members of the SPNI, and hundreds of thousands of individuals participate in the organization’s myriad activities each year, including thousands of children and young people who regularly participate in the organization’s nature and orienteering courses.

Engaging People in Our Mission

Seventy years later, SPNI is still blazing the trail for nature and the environment in Israel. Tens of thousands of households are members of the SPNI, and hundreds of thousands of individuals participate in the organization’s myriad activities each year, including thousands of children and young people who regularly participate in the organization’s nature and orienteering courses.

Affiliates

The American Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (ASPNI), known as Nature Israel, is the American fundraising arm of The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI), the leader in protecting Israel’s environment. Nature Israel was established in 1983 by a dedicated group of philanthropists in the United States to support SPNI’s mission. We are committed to the highest standards of stewardship of donor funds. You can view our financial statements here.

The American Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (ASPNI), known as Nature Israel, is the American fundraising arm of The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI), the leader in protecting Israel’s environment. Nature Israel was established in 1983 by a dedicated group of philanthropists in the United States to support SPNI’s mission. We are committed to the highest standards of stewardship of donor funds. You can view our financial statements here.

The Canadian Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel was founded in 2011 by Allan and Helaine Shiff. An earlier mission trip to Israel awoke in them a desire to rally fellow Canadians, to help protect Israel’s treasured and threatened natural features by working with Israel’s oldest environmental NGO, HaKhevra L’Haganat HaTeva (Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel, or SPNI). Today, the goal of Nature Israel (formerly CSPNI) is to raise awareness and funds to support the activities of SPNI in Israel.

The Canadian Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel was founded in 2011 by Allan and Helaine Shiff. An earlier mission trip to Israel awoke in them a desire to rally fellow Canadians, to help protect Israel’s treasured and threatened natural features by working with Israel’s oldest environmental NGO, HaKhevra L’Haganat HaTeva (Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel, or SPNI). Today, the goal of Nature Israel (formerly CSPNI) is to raise awareness and funds to support the activities of SPNI in Israel.

The United Kindom Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (UKSPNI), a UK-registered charity was established in 1986 to support the work of the Society in Israel.  A UKSPNI annual subscription of £25 gives you access to nature tours in Israel, trips to Field Schools and intimate knowledge of the ways SPNI is building a sustainable Israel and teaching its children to protect the environment. UKSPNI is your link to a different Israel where you might witness 56,000 cranes overwintering in the Hula Valley, walk the 630 km of nature trails or simply spend time at a Field School with your children.

The United Kindom Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (UKSPNI), a UK-registered charity was established in 1986 to support the work of the Society in Israel.  A UKSPNI annual subscription of £25 gives you access to nature tours in Israel, trips to Field Schools and intimate knowledge of the ways SPNI is building a sustainable Israel and teaching its children to protect the environment. UKSPNI is your link to a different Israel where you might witness 56,000 cranes overwintering in the Hula Valley, walk the 630 km of nature trails or simply spend time at a Field School with your children.

SPNI France

Créée en 1981, SPNI France s’est donné pour objectifs de diffuser en France la connaissance sur les activités de la SPNI, de développer les contacts entre la SPNI et des ONG françaises de défense de l’environnement, des municipalités et des autorités locales, régionales et nationales, afin de promouvoir des projets en commun. Par exemple, nous avons organisé des voyages pour voir les oiseaux migrateurs, dont plus d’un demi milliard traversent les cieux d’Israël à chaque saison de migration. Nous soutenons aussi des projets de la SPNI à fort caractère social comme les jardins communautaires au sein des villes afin d’y créer des ilots de verdure et de développer la responsabilité sociale envers l’environnement. Vous pouvez devenir membre et contribuer à soutenir les projets de la SPNI très simplement en ligne.

Créée en 1981, SPNI France s’est donné pour objectifs de diffuser en France la connaissance sur les activités de la SPNI, de développer les contacts entre la SPNI et des ONG françaises de défense de l’environnement, des municipalités et des autorités locales, régionales et nationales, afin de promouvoir des projets en commun. Par exemple, nous avons organisé des voyages pour voir les oiseaux migrateurs, dont plus d’un demi milliard traversent les cieux d’Israël à chaque saison de migration. Nous soutenons aussi des projets de la SPNI à fort caractère social comme les jardins communautaires au sein des villes afin d’y créer des ilots de verdure et de développer la responsabilité sociale envers l’environnement. Vous pouvez devenir membre et contribuer à soutenir les projets de la SPNI très simplement en ligne.