Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife was founded in 1970 by the then Premier of NSW, the Hon. Thomas Lancelot Lewis AO. It was designed to be the fundraising arm of the NSW National Parks & Wildlife Service.
In 2000, the Foundation amended its charter to extend its conservation work across Australia. The Foundation is not a government body or agency.
It is an independent, a-political, not-for-profit organisation that funds environmental conservation work in Australia for the benefit of Australian native plants and animals.
The Foundation acquires high conservation value land to add to the National Reserve System. Individuals or businesses donate property to the Foundation, or the Foundation purchases private land.
The Foundation does not keep and privately manage land itself. The Foundation gifts all land it acquires to the publically owned and publically managed National Estate, which comes under the jurisdiction of the Commonwealth, State and Territory and Local Governments.
The Foundation is not a land holder. Land included in the National Reserve System (aka National Estate) is protected in perpetuity for the benefit of Australia's natural and cultural heritage, and future generations.
The Foundation believes this is the best strategy possible for the long term conservation of the environment and biodiversity in Australia.
Since 1970 the Foundation has acquired over 500,000 hectares of habitat and places of natural beauty for 50 national parks and nature reserves, including Mungo National Park.
In its history, the Foundation also funded threatened species recovery programs and research for more than 35 species of birds, reptiles, mammals, amphibians and plants. Animals included were the Lord Howe Island Woodhen, the Gould's Petrel, the Malleefowl and the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby.
The Foundation also funded cultural heritage conservation projects for more than ten Aboriginal and European historical sites, including Fort Denison, QStation and Hill End.
Other projects focussed on education and awareness raising, which included implementation, improvement and maintenance of walking tracks, viewing platforms, interpretive signage and disabled access in many national parks.
Supporters can donate high conservation value land to the Foundation to be included in the National Reserve System. Supporters can also leave a bequest in their will to the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife to support environmental conservation work in Australia.