Hikes that bring hope

Friendswood, TX   |
GuideStar Charity Check


EIN: 45-4085310


Hiking on backcountry trails helps many people re-connect with nature and with places within themselves that get obscured in the daily hustle and bustle. A few days in the solitude of the trail re-grounds them and helps preserve their mental health. For people battling mental illness, however, the path to mental health is rarely so simple. Mental illness affects 1 out of 4 families in the United States, leaving those who suffer from it and their families searching for answers, cures and treatments that will allow them to experience the simple joy of living. The mission of HIKE for Mental Health is to: 1. Increase awareness and raise funds to alleviate the suffering of those living with mental illness. 2. Increase public appreciation for and responsible use of wilderness trails.

Ruling year info


Principal Officer

Leo Walker

Main address

207 West Heritage Drive

Friendswood, TX 77546 USA

Show more contact info



Subject area info

Mental health care

Sports and recreation

Population served info

Nomadic people

People with diseases and illnesses

Military personnel


NTEE code info

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (F01)

Other Recreation, Sports, or Leisure Activities N.E.C. (N99)

IRS subsection

501(c)(3) Public Charity

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Tax forms


Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The stigma surrounding mental illness impedes many people suffering with mental illnesses from receiving the help and support they need. Mental illnesses are poorly understood, and the lack of understanding fosters the stigma. Treatment options continue to improve every year but more research is needed. At the same time, we all have at our disposal one the best ways to maintain positive mental health and help prevent the stresses of everyday living from leading to more serious mental health issues: nature and exercise. Hiking combines both. So we organize hikes to introduce more people to the health benefits of hiking (preventative) and we use the hikes as fundraisers to support brain & behavior research leading to new understanding and new treatment options.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Mental health research

HIKE for Mental Health directs 80% of the funds received from its hikes to alleviating the suffering of mental illness. The bulk of these funds are dedicated improving our understanding of brain and behavior disorders, thereby improving treatments and shedding light on the unknowns of mental illness which can foster the stigma that surrounds it. Our research partner is the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation.

Population(s) Served
People with diseases and illnesses

HIKE for Mental Health dedicated its Veterans Day Walk to alleviating suffering from mental illnesses and emotional distress in our
veterans and active duty service men and women. Many of them return from the battlefield but continue to fight internal battles
for their mental health and peace of mind. Donations from our Veterans Day Walk support vets and service personnel in three ways.
First, in partnership with an Army Medical Center in Texas, we presented purchase books, workbooks, videos
and other self-help materials for patients of its behavioral ward, which treats primarily active duty service men and women.
Second, we supported VFW Post 7109 in Pearland, TX, our local partner and co-sponsor of the Pearland Veterans Day Walk
for PTSD Awareness, in their effort to increase services offered to veterans and to support their initiative to become
a more integral part of the community. Third, we contributed to Counseling Connections for Change, a 501c3 nonprofit
counselling center in Pearland, TX, for community education and awareness programs.

Population(s) Served
Military personnel

HIKE for Mental Health designated the Appalachian Trail Conversancy and the Pacific Crest Trail Association as recipients
of its 2015 awards to promote responsible use of and to preserve wilderness trails. As an organizer of hikes on which we promote
awareness of the stigma associated with mental illness, we believe it is important to give back a portion of our receipts to maintain
and preserve trails and trail systems.
In 2015, we awarded 20% of the donations received from hiker sponsorship, or $7,000 each, to the ATC and the PCTA.
The ATC’s mission is to preserve and manage the Appalachian Trail – ensuring that its vast natural beauty and priceless cultural
heritage can be shared and enjoyed today, tomorrow, and for centuries to come. The PCTA protects, preserves and promotes the PCT
as one of the best trail experiences on Earth.

Population(s) Served
Nomadic people

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Our goal is simple - a world in which everyone, including those who suffer from mental illness, can find the simple joy of living. We believe that this goal can only be accomplished by eliminating the stigma associated with mental illness and by deepening our understanding of mental illness, its causes, its treatments, and its cures. We believe that for many people, including those living with mental illness, time spent hiking in Nature can be an effective part of their wellness program.

Our approach is simple:

1. We organize and promote responsible wilderness hikes.
2. Hiker-volunteers collect sponsorships to participate in the hikes.
3. We distribute 100% of the net proceeds to our mission causes.

We also encourage hikers to register their own hikes with HIKE for Mental Health. There is no cost. We ask them to personalize a sponsorship page which we create and to tell others about their hike and about how to support HIKE for Mental Health.

This ground roots approach encourages involvement and dialog about mental illness among our hiker- and sponsor-community.

HIKE for Mental Health is an all-volunteer, grass-roots organization. We have established a strong, positive reputation within the hiking community in the US and forged a great partnership with the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation. We are small but dedicated. And growing.

As an all-volunteer, grassroots group, we are proud of what we have accomplished since our founding in 2011. We have raised more than $335,000 for research grants to alleviate the suffering of mental illness. More $75,000 has been directed to non-profit organizations that protect our country's major wilderness trails. And veterans programs in and around Pearland, Texas, have received more than $45,000. We have introduced scored of people to wilderness hiking and raised awareness with hundreds of the perils of the stigma of mental illness.

Yet, until the stigma surrounding mental illness has been completed stamped out, our mission is not complete.


Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Average of 0.24 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Average of 0.5 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 0% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of HIKE FOR MENTAL HEALTH INC’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

Created in partnership with

Business model indicators

Profitability info 2013 2014 2015
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation $1,258 $3,088 -$2,148
As % of expenses 3.5% 4.1% -2.4%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation $1,258 $3,088 -$2,148
As % of expenses 3.5% 4.1% -2.4%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $38,134 $78,329 $93,657
Total revenue, % change over prior year 0.0% 105.4% 19.6%
Program services revenue 0.0% 2.2% 0.2%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 100.0% 97.8% 99.8%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $35,634 $76,113 $90,775
Total expenses, % change over prior year 0.0% 113.6% 19.3%
Personnel 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Professional fees 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Occupancy 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pass-through 83.3% 81.4% 82.1%
All other expenses 16.7% 18.6% 17.9%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2013 2014 2015
Total expenses (after depreciation) $35,634 $76,113 $90,775
One month of savings $2,970 $6,343 $7,565
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $38,604 $82,456 $98,340

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2013 2014 2015
Months of cash 1.7 1.1 2.3
Months of cash and investments 1.7 1.1 2.3
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 1.1 1.0 0.6
Balance sheet composition info 2013 2014 2015
Cash $4,952 $7,168 $17,050
Investments $0 $0 $0
Receivables $0 $0 $0
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $0 $0 $0
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 0.0% 0.0% 41.1%
Unrestricted net assets $3,315 $6,403 $4,255
Temporarily restricted net assets $1,637 $764 $5,795
Permanently restricted net assets $0 $0 $0
Total restricted net assets $1,637 $764 $5,795
Total net assets $4,952 $7,168 $10,050

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2013 2014 2015
Material data errors No Yes No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Principal Officer

Leo Walker

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990


Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.


Board of directors
as of 07/02/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Leo Walker

No Affiliation

Term: 2020 - 2022

Leo Walker

No Affiliation

Tom Kennedy

No Affiliation

Nancy Kozanecki

No Affiliation

Brayden Donnelly

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/8/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data


No data

Sexual orientation

No data


No data