Established in 1994, the foundation’s success is founded on trust and collaboration, as well as respect for local culture and the close involvement of local people and communities. Protecting emblematic species and tackling threats, responding rapidly and applying sound science, encouraging collaboration and staying the course are our trademark.
And as we move toward ending our grant-making in 2022, we are putting greater emphasis on funding project portfolios – delivered by groups of partners working together, and collaboratively funded by donor consortia.
To conserve biodiversity for the benefit of people and nature by funding, mobilising and strengthening our partners and the conservation community.
Geographic FocusCoastal West Africa, from Mauritania to Sierra Leone; the Mediterranean Basin and bordering countries; Switzerland. Some global grants give us the flexibility to support important initiatives that complement our place-based programmes.
The foundation supports conservation that benefits people and nature through four formal Programmes in the Mediterranean, Coastal West Africa, Switzerland and Sustainable Economy.
Coastal West Africa
For the purposes of the foundation’s work, the coastal eco-region of West Africa is taken to be the geographical area in which the Regional Coastal and Marine Conservation Program for West Africa (PRCM) operates, and which currently includes the following countries: Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Cape Verde. In this eco-region, the foundation aims to improve the conservation status of:
• sea turtles and seabirds
• coastal wetlands
• seagrass beds
• small pelagic fish
The foundation defines the Mediterranean Basin as being delimited both by the boundaries of the Mediterranean watershed and by the biogeographical range of the olive tree. In this region, we aim to improve the conservation status of:
• freshwater basins and aquifers
• coastal and island wetlands
• seagrass and coralligenous habitat
• key fish species targeted by artisanal fisheries
• critical landscapes maintained by cultural practice
• priority species
In Switzerland, we focus on the following priorities:
• sustainable agriculture
• ecological infrastructure
• circular economy
We aim to contribute to the creation of a more sustainable global economic system throughout our place-based programmes and beyond, by focusing on
• finance for biodiversity
• circular economy
• natural capital
Securing a lasting impact of the projects we fund within each programme, and enabling our key partners to continue their work once MAVA has phased out of its funding in 2022, is a philosophy that shapes our whole approach. This is reflected in the programmes’ strategies and through the work of our Impact & Sustainability unit which focuses on:
• nurturing conservation leaders
• strengthening partners
• boosting civil society
• developing innovative finance mechanisms