Public and Members Vote to Allocate EOCA Conservation Funding

Release date: 14 November 2017

For the third year in succession, the European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) has held two annual funding rounds, this time allocating a total of €300,000 of funding to projects conserving threatened habitats and having a link to outdoor enthusiasts around the world.  During the latest autumn round, 131 conservation organisations applied for funding and five have now been selected through a public vote and a member’s vote to receive funding.

Salviamo l'Orso Image Francesco Culicelli
Salviamo l'Orso Image Francesco Culicelli

Following receipt of a record breaking number of applications, EOCA’s General Managers and Scientific Advisors used established criteria to rigorously assess all of the applications and produce a shortlist of 15 projects .  These projects best fitted the Association’s funding criteria and were deemed the most worthwhile from a conservation point of view.  All of these projects were then involved in a public vote hosted on the Association’s website.  The projects were divided into three categories;  projects addressing water based issues and habitats, those conserving or restoring forests, and those located in mountainous areas.  The mountain category vote was also hosted by MountainBlog.  Fierce competition lead to over 50,000 votes being cast to select three projects to be funded. These were:

Removing barbed wire
Removing barbed wire

• Water – SAS Coastal Environmental Regional Reps, UK. 
• Mountain – Conserving South Africa’s Endangered Cranes, Drakensberg.  
• Forest – Habitat Restoration and Ecotourism for Chimpanzees, Uganda.

Following the public vote, members of the Association then had a week to select two more projects to be funded via a private vote.  The projects selected were:

* Reducing Plastic at Coastal Community Schools, Guatemala.  
* Let’s Take Action for the Bear, Italy.

Catherine Savidge, Joint General Manager of EOCA said ”The voting period is always an incredibly exciting time of year, with thousands of people getting involved to have their say.  It is a valuable tool for all projects involved in helping to put their work and their environmental issues on an international platform.  We are very excited to support these five new projects, in five different countries.  We look forward to hearing about and sharing the progress they make with their vitally important projects.”

To read more about the 5 new projects and what they will achieve, please click HERE

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The funding that EOCA and Original Buff, S.A. have given Ennerdale's Squirrel Woodlands has enabled us to make a massive step change in our conservation of red squirrels, allowing us to purchase equipment, employ local people and support the local community in extending native woodlands and helping keep red squirrels in the valley. The simple funding process has meant we can focus on doing real tangible stuff on the ground"
Gareth Browning, Wild Ennerdale