Luc Hoffmann’s activities in our three regions included founding or helping to found many of our long-term partners – ones such as the Camargue’s Tour du Valat, West Africa’s Fondation Internationale du Banc D’Arguin and the Society for the Preservation of Prespa. He also played key roles in the creation of WWF International, IUCN, The Ramsar Convention on wetlands, Wetlands International and many other key conservation organisations. Working via these established forces for conservation, and many others, our focus is to:
- conserve biodiversity
- ensure sustainable use of natural resources
- build strong conservation communities
Since 1994, MAVA has grown from being one person’s passion to becoming a professional foundation that is a key funder of global conservation. All of the Hoffmann family’s investment in conservation is now consolidated within MAVA. Foundation activities are carried out by nine dedicated staff, each of whom represents the conservation interests of MAVA’s founding father and his children.
A 2010 external evaluation listed our strengths, in addition to conservation funding, as including:
- Expertise and legitimacy
- Neutrality and apolitical approach
- Long-term engagement
- Strong relationship with implementing partners
- Willingness to fund the “unfashionable”
All that we have achieved in that time has been thanks to the diligence and skills of our implementing partners, from global to local levels. We are also indebted to many individuals who have helped make us what we are today, particularly notable ones being Mario Broggi, Pierre Campredon, Pierre Goeldlin, Raymond Junod, Mike Moser and Jean-Paul Taris.
Despite all that has been achieved, no one can afford complacency given the state of our world today. It is that sense of urgency that drives us on, not least in our efforts to professionalise MAVA’s structure, procedures and staffing. It also inspired our move in May 2010 to Gland, Switzerland, on the north shore of Lake Geneva. That brought us nearer long-time partners IUCN and WWF while making us more accessible to all our partners.