Thursday 12 September 2013
Admin and Financial Matters
- The management accounts for July were reviewed and approved. WLT Head of Finance reported that the position remained stable, and provisional results for August suggested income remained ahead of reforecast. Income was expected to increase from September in response to major fundraising activities planned for the autumn.
- Definitions for evaluating expenditure on conservation activities had been agreed and would be taken forward in formulating the budget for 2014.
- Issues relating to the WLT Risk Assessment were discussed, with particular focus on the potential for reputational damage through public perceptions of WLT’s associates and partners. It was understood that such risks were being actively managed by WLT executive, and that each case would need to be assessed on its own merits and any action taken as appropriate.
- Trustees and Council Members were advised that a special resolution circulated to members had been formally approved, and was currently being lodged with Companies House and Charity Commission.The resolution proposed the formal adoption of amended articles which had previously been approved at the AGM of 13th June 2004, but which through an oversight had not been properly lodged with regulating authorities.
World Land Trust-US
- It was announced that WLT-US officially changes its name to Rainforest Trust on 16 September.The change of name will not affect the Trust’s close collaborative relationship with the former World Land Trust-US, and WLT anticipating continuing the close relationship with Rainforest Trust on the basis of an agreement with them as a strategic partner. Trustees and Council Members expressed their congratulations and good wishes for Rainforest Trust’s future success.
- Trustees and Council Members welcomed Marc Ancrenaz, Scientific Director of WLT programme partner Hutan, who gave an insightful and inspirational presentation on the work of the NGO in Malaysian Borneo. Marc Ancrenaz outlined the scientific research which underpinned Hutan’s conservation strategy; Hutan was currently working with WLT to create the Keruak Corridor to secure habitat vital for the survival of the Bornean Orang-utan. This project was the focus of the Trust’s recently launched Million Pound Appeal. WLT was aiming to raise £300,000 towards the Borneo Million Pound Appeal through its Big Match Fortnight fundraising campaign (2-16 October).
- The CEO gave an illustrated presentation highlighting recent successes of the Conservation programme. He drew particular attention to recent camera trap evidence proving the presence of the Caucasian Leopard in the project area in Armenia. WLT was keen to extend its activities in Bolivia, where land was still relatively cheap but hugely threatened. In Paraguay a recent change of government and the appointment as Minister of the Environment, a former Guyra Paraguay staff member, Christina Morales, had provided a window of opportunity to address Paraguay’s urgent conservation needs.
- Among the successes highlighted in the presentation was the Keepers of the Wild programme, viewed by WLT as one of the best ways of supporting the partners and protecting the land secured for conservation.
- Trustees and Council Members discussed the hazards involved in working with major international companies whose activities were detrimental to wildlife habitats. While all recognised the potential risks it was agreed that it was worthwhile to work with companies which were committed to mitigating their environmental impacts.
Development and Fundraising Activities
- PR consultant Emma Beckett reported that the Borneo Million Pound Appeal had been successfully launched on 13 August, assisted by the presence in the UK of Isabelle Lackman, Co-Director of Hutan. Considerable press interest had been generated.