The WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) is a global NGO (non-governmental organization) which focuses on lowering the impacts of human beings on the environment while preserving the wilderness. Originally, it was known as the World Wildlife Fund, but they changed the name in 1986, and only retained their initials. The organization is still known by its original name North America. WWF was founded in 1961. WWF is the largest conservation organization in the world which has over five million supporters and one thousand three hundred environmental and conservation projects in over a hundred nations. The organization gets 8% of their funding from corporations, 19% from governments, and 55% from bequests and individual's contributions.
Mission of the WWF
The WWF’s primary target is reducing degradation of the natural environment. Their mission is decreasing all the threats to earth’s diversity and conserve nature. WWF’s work is organized around oceans, forests, wildlife, freshwater, climate, and food. WWF believes that when working together, we can restore and protect animals and their habitats, and strengthen the local’s ability to preserve the natural resources which they rely on while mobilizing many people to support environmental conservation.
The organization was established on April 29, 1961, and they opened the first offices in Morges, Switzerland on September 11, 1961. Currently, their headquarters, the WWF international is in Rue Mauverney, Gland, Switzerland. The WWF international is the coordinating center for the WWF’s entire network. WWF was formed as a funding organization for various conservation groups like the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) which is also based in Vaud city. The canton of Vaud is the fourth largest Swiss city by size and third by population.
Other WWF’s Regional Offices
The WWF is supported by over a hundred nations, and it has about eighty regional offices. The primary goal of these regional offices is to oversee various conservation projects in the world. Some of their principal regional offices include the West Indian Ocean, Southern Pacific, Mekong, Mediterranean, Guianas, European Alps, Eastern Africa, Danube-Carpathian, Central America, Central Africa, and Adria among others. WWF has over six thousand two hundred full-time employees who work from these regional offices and their headquarters.
The History of WWF
Fairfield Osborn established WWF’s precursor organization the Conservation Foundation in 1948 as an affiliate of Wildlife Conservation Society. The primary goal of the Conservations Foundation was to protect the global natural resources. Prince Bernhard helped form the WWF after Victor Stolan proposed the idea for setting up a fund for endangered species to Sir Julian Huxley. Max Nicholson came up with the name of the organization on April 29, 1961, and they opened their first offices in September of the same year with Prince Bernhard as the first president. Its establishment was marked by the signing of their founding document which had their commitments to save the wildlife known as the Morges Manifesto. They initially held fundraising and gave grants to numerous NGOs whose primary focus was protecting the endangered animals. Once its resources grew, they expanded to other areas including biological diversity preservation, climate change, reduction of pollution and sustainable usage of natural resources.