Since 2012, I have been in charge of the project “Enhancing Nature Protection in Europe” for the Aage V. Jensen Charity Foundation. Building on this, in 2020 I was able to propose a foundation cooperation to the MAVA Foundation for Nature to jointly advance nature conservation in wetlands.
Wetlands (rivers, lakes, bogs…) are home to a rich biodiversity and also provide water for the local population. However, due to human and climatic disturbances, the extinction rate in these freshwater ecosystems is four to six times higher than in marine or terrestrial areas. In the Mediterranean, populations of freshwater vertebrates have declined by an average of 28% since 1993, and 36% of the remaining species are now endangered. It is necessary to face up to these upheavals. For this reason, the Aage V. Jensen Charity Foundation, the MAVA Foundation and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation have joined forces at our invitation to create the Donors’ Initiative for Mediterranean Freshwater Ecosystems.
After the first call for proposals in 2021, six projects were funded with a total of 2.1 million euros. A second call for proposals for a further 2 million euros was launched in 2022; from this call on, the Hans Wilsdorf Foundation also has been involved in DIMFE. For the third call in 2023, the Sigrid Rausing Trust got on board of DIMFE.