PRESS RELEASE – YESTERDAY (Monday, May 28th, 2018) heralded a new day, embodying a sense of renewed and collective hope, with the official launch of the Saint Lucia National Conservation Fund on the environmental landscape of Saint Lucia at the Pigeon Island National Landmark.
The SLUNCF’s Vision is to ensure ‘Saint Lucia’s biodiversity and natural resources and human and ecological communities are healthy and resilient to change’ whilst its Mission is to ‘Catalyze and support the conservation, restoration, and effective management of Saint Lucia’s biodiversity and natural resources’.
SLUNCF has been established in connection with and forms part of, the Sustainable Financing & Management of Eastern Caribbean Marine Ecosystems Project (Eastern Caribbean Marine Ecosystems Project).
This is a project undertaken by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the governments of Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to contribute to enhancing the long-term sustainability of Protected Area (PA) networks in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) region by (i) establishing sustainable financing mechanisms, (ii) strengthening MPA networks and (iii) deploying a regional monitoring and information system for PA networks in the OECS region.
Leadership representing the Government of Saint Lucia and a broad group of civil society actors including members of the conservation, community and private sectors founded the SLUNCF in 2015, drawing upon existing institutional strengths and ensuring an innovative and multi-sectoral perspective. SLUNCF is grateful to The World Bank, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund (the “CBF”) who provided technical support for this process.
The SLUNCF is designed to accommodate a diverse range of funding flows that will catalyse and support the conservation, restoration and effective management of Saint Lucia’s biodiversity and natural resources.
According to the SLUNCF Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Dr.Vasantha Chase “We are now excited to begin grant making. We are presently working with the SGP to issue our first grant. Immediately following this launch, we shall be embarking on a community roadshow to sensitize the public to the SLUNCF and to seek and formulate prospective community based projects that fit into the goals of the SLUNCF”.
The SLUNCF’s mandate extends beyond the management of CBF funds and the SLUNCF will seek to generate additional sustainable funding to support other focal areas including sustainable livelihoods.