Thursday 7th February 2013
Trustees only meeting
The meeting began with a Trustees-only meeting to deal with administrative and governance issues for which they are responsible.
It was announced that Gil Child had decided to retire as a Trustee with effect from the forthcoming AGM.The CEO paid tribute to the support and advice Gil Child had provided over many years’ association with the Trust.
Admin and Finance
- Trust had been offered on secondment for 6 months a senior BT manager with a strong marketing background. It was agreed that this presented an excellent opportunity for WLT to work on a marketing strategy for which resources would otherwise not be available.
- Trustees reviewed draft end of year figures. Core revenue was seen to be in line with 2011, which was felt to be a positive result in a very difficult year. Concerns about the unrestricted reserves had been resolved, with surpluses carried forward in all categories.
- Trustees asked for a report to be prepared for the following meeting to review the Trust’s activities and achievements against its objectives of the mission statement.
- The revised budget was reviewed and approved by Trustees.
- Trustees approved a proposal to renew the grazing lease at Kites Hill.
- A resolution was proposed to clarify arrangements for the appointment and retirement of Trustees and Council Members and was agreed unanimously by Trustees.
Following the meeting of Trustees, a meeting of the full Council of the World Land Trust was held.
Key issues and achievements from the conservation programme were discussed:
- WLT were working with 26 programme partners and 4 strategic partners; 18 Keepers were being supported. It had been calculated that funding from WLT and WLT-US had protected 1 million acres directly, with 10 million acres effectively protected.
- In Armenia it was confirmed that tracks which had been seen in the reserve area had been definitely identified as Caucasian Leopard. The lack of government support for conservation was highlighted, but the involvement by international NGOs such as WLT was valuable in putting pressure on governments to take action.
- Guatemala: The CEO reported that he was planning a visit later in the year as a follow-up to a highly effective fundraising trip in 2012.
- Bolivia: The programmes team were asked to consider options for increasing the land under conservation while property prices remained relatively low.
- WLT now officially has its first UK programme partner, TCV Gloucester, who had undertaken to manage the woodland area at Kites Hill.
- Fundraising update: it was noted that while staff shortages had been a major issue within Communications, the team had been strengthened recently with the appointment of a Writer/Editor and Head of Digital Communications.
- Work was underway to implement the recommendations of consultants who had been commissioned to review the website: a key target would be to encourage visitors to remain longer on the website. Plans for 2013 included developing a more active social media strategy and additional content on YouTube.
- A number of potential foundations and trusts had been identified, and work was proceeding on grant applications for funding for WLT Gallery and the Borneo Appeal.