Machakhela National Park
Machakhela National Park, Georgia

OUR PURPOSE

NATURE PROTECTION IN THE SOUTH CAUCASUS

CNF provides vital funding support for nature conservation in the stunning wilderness areas of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. These three countries form the core of an ecoregion that is one of the most biologically rich on Earth and are home to an unusually high number of endemic plant and animal species.

OUR STORY

The Caucasus Nature Fund was officially founded at an Environmental Ministerial Conference in Berlin in March 2006 to help the governments of the South Caucasus to support their Protected Area systems with operational costs and capacity building. The Conference was attended by the then-environmental ministers of each of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia and hosted by BMZ, the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development. The founders of CNF were KfW, acting on a mandate from BMZ, as well as WWF Deutschland and Conservation International.

Following a “50 percent principle”, CNF can match but does not exceed state budgets – potentially doubling a specific park’s operating funds. We began our work with a clear vision and initial funding of €7.5 million, working at one Protected Area in Georgia in 2009 – Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park. Khosrov Forest State Reserve in Armenia came on-stream in 2010. Our annual support in 2009 was in the amount of €60,000 for emergency support for firefighting equipment on 107,000 hectares in the Region in the aftermath of fires in 2008.

At the start of this year – 15 years into our existence – we support 21 Protected Areas in the Region – five in Armenia and 16 in Georgia, with ambitions for further expansion. Our annual program budget is of just under €3.5 million, and with that we support 850 park employees on 679,910 hectares across Georgia and Armenia. We additionally provide broad-ranging support for nature conservation in the Region through biodiversity monitoring, capacity building and community engagement and awareness-raising.

Azat River, Armenia © Wikimedia Commons
Azat River, Armenia © Wikimedia Commons

That remarkable success has made us a valued partner of the governments whose Protected Areas we support. We currently manage over €85 mio in assets that support our work, thanks to the generous contributions of BMZ and many other magnanimous public and private donors.

Khor Virap Sanctuary, Wetlands, Armenia
Khor Virap Sanctuary, Armenia

OUR WORK

CNF provides matching grants for operating costs including salary supplements, essential equipment and maintenance of protected areas in the region. In addition, we support the development of management plans, biodiversity monitoring systems and sustainable economic development through ecotourism programs.

Working in partnership with the national governments and communities, we provide continuing support – both to assure basic funding for the long-term and to build local capacities so that management effectiveness in the parks is permanently improved.

WHERE WE WORK

LATEST NEWS

International Ranger Day 2023, Armenia - Ranger Award
The release took a little longer, but it was worth the wait. Today we show how we celebrated International Ranger Day in Armenia in 2023 and also presented…
CNF, Caucasus Nature Fund and partner Bank of Georgia, Interview with Tea Barbakadze, National Director Georgia, CNF
You can find the original Georgian version of the Interview on the Bank of Georgia Blog here. January 31, 2024 Support of protected areas is a social responsibility…
SMART (Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool) handheld devices to record observations and incidents © Caucasus Nature Fund / CNF, 2024
Georgia's Protected Areas Thrive with SMART In the realm of conservation, the implementation of cutting-edge technology has become a crucial factor in the protection and monitoring of biodiversity.…
Annual Awards from Caucasus Nature Fund and the Agency of Protected Areas, December 24th & 25th 2023, Georgia
Front row, from left to right: Tea Barbakadze, CNF; Levan Tabunidze, CNF; Nata Sultanishvili, Head of Planning and Development Division of the Agency of Protected Areas (‘APA’); Deputy…

OUR PARTNERS

CNF is a conservation trust fund created to safeguard the Caucasus ecoregion—one of the most biologically rich and diverse areas on Earth. Initially established in 2007 by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), through the KfW Development Bank (KfW), Conservation International and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), today we are a multi-stakeholder organization.

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