The story of Great Plains Foundation has its roots in the earliest days of conservation; when the idea of protecting pristine wilderness was recognized as a public good. From those early models of conservation came the notion that to truly protect wilderness the entire ecosystem needed to be preserved. It is this approach, maintaining and when necessary restoring, functioning ecosystems that guides Great Plains Conservation and its Foundation.
Founded as a hybrid organization, with both commercial and charitable arms, Great Plains Conservation and its Foundation are securing African landscapes of a scale large enough to also protect its resident and seasonal wildlife populations. In that effort, they identify and select key areas that are under threat, often next to national parks, World Heritage Sites, and reserves, and acquire the rights to convert that land to protected areas with economic benefits. For example, Great Plains converts hunting land or agricultural land to wildlife conservation supported by photographic tourism. Their collection of world-class safari camps are also global leaders in sustainability, demonstrating that commercial operations can positively benefit landscapes when done correctly. Great Plains and its Foundation currently manage approximately 1,000,000 acres with plans to expand to 5,000,000 acres across a variety of fragile landscapes.