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National Parks and Conservation Foundation launch

Media statement 26 February 2001
For immediate release

New Zealand National Parks and Conservation Foundation
launched to promote natural heritage

A Foundation to help protect and conserve New Zealand’s unique natural heritage was launched today at a special function hosted by Prime Minister Helen Clark.

New Zealand National Parks and Conservation Foundation is an independent charitable trust which provides a way for corporates and individuals to invest in New Zealand’s special places. The Foundation has been established with the strong support of the Department of Conservation.

Foundation Chairman Hon Denis Marshall said until now there has been no organisation in New Zealand focused solely on raising funds from the private sector to support conservation.

“By creating a philanthropic link between donors and the conservation community, the Foundation aims to increase access to funds and foster greater grass roots support for protecting our natural heritage.”

The Foundation is modelled on similar organisations in the United States and Australia and has been established primarily as a fundraiser and grants administrator. It will be complementary to organisations such as Forest and Bird, and does not intend to compete with other conservation organisations.

“The Foundation does not intend to replace Government funding for conservation or environmental work. However, by fostering community initiatives the Foundation can add value to the public investment and help extend what can be achieved,” Mr Marshall said.

“The Foundation will work to align itself with a number of corporate sponsors to establish an endowment fund from which annual grants can be made to community conservation projects, particularly those supporting projects in and around national parks.”

The Foundation has started work on its immediate aim of building an endowment fund of $2 million over the next three years.

With the help of the following sponsors the Foundation has already raised more than $300,000 in corporate sponsorship and donations. Sponsors supporting the Foundation to date include Transpower NZ, AJ Hackett Bungy, Les and Olive Hutchins, Fujitsu NZ, Tourism Milford, Sysdoc Group NZ, Dymocks Bookshops, New Holland Press, JR Design and Busby Ramshaw Grice.

With the support of Transpower NZ, the Foundation has also funded a range of community conservation projects. These include helping community groups undertake weed control on Little Barrier Island and in the Rangitikei, supporting an endangered species project near Wanaka, providing assistance to a native mistletoe restoration project in the Karioi Rahui adjacent to Tongariro National Park and helping with the Limestone Island restoration project near Whangarei.

ENDS

For more information:
Hon Denis Marshall
Chair, NZ National Parks and Conservation Foundation
Ph: (04) 495 3747

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