Setting Up a River Catchment Area Protection Fund

The protection of river catchment areas is a costly affair. The people who guard the river catchment areas against encroachment have to be paid. This costs money. Sometimes, the core river catchment areas have to be fenced off, and this too costs quite a bit of money. At other times, you have to undertake tree planting campaigns, to protect the river catchment areas – and even this requires a lot of money. So, without a doubt, you need to have money, if you are to be successful in protecting river catchment areas. And when it comes to raising this money, you have two options. One option is to be pleading for donations every time something comes up. The other option is set up a fund, from which you can readily draw money when need arises. Needless to say, the latter is the more prudent option. And in setting up a river catchment area protection fund, you need to:

  1. Figure out how much money you need for the effort: here, you need to look at the specific activities you will need to undertake, as part of the river catchment area protection campaign. Then you need to get estimates of what the activities are likely to cost. On top of that, you need to add an allowance for unforeseeable contingencies.
  2. Figure out how you are to raise the funds: you can lobby the local government, for an allocation. You can also lobby local companies or institutions to contribute to the fund, as part of their corporate social responsibility. You also have the option of requesting private individuals for donations — to contribute money to the river catchment area protection fund. A private individual who has chanced upon a windfall may be inclined to contribute to this sort of fund. Take, for instance, someone who works at PepsiCo (meaning the he gets his paystubs through the PepsiCo employees portal, at www.mypepsico.com. Then, on some date, he decides to check out his paystubs. So he proceeds to the My pepsico view login page, signs in, and navigates to the paystubs section – only to learn that he has gotten a huge bonus. Such an individual, given the windfall that has come his way, may be inclined to donate some of the money to the river catchment area protection fund. This is especially likely to be the case if he sees/understands how the river catchment areas protection efforts are likely to be beneficial to him.
  3. Figure out where you are to invest the funds: you need to invest the funds where you can retrieve them at short notice. This should also be somewhere where you can get a decent return on investment, without exposing the funds to undue risks.

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