New foundation improves nature in Denmark

History is made in Denmark when the Danish Nature Foundation soon becomes a reality. A unique Nature foundation established as a public-private partnership between the Danish state and the two private foundations, VILLUM FONDEN and Aage V. Jensen Naturfond. The purpose of The Danish Nature Foundation is to improve conditions for Danish nature and to open up new opportunities for the public, companies, and organisations to contribute with both time and money. When the Foundation law is enacted by the Danish Parliament, the DKK 875 million initial endowment – donated by VILLUM FONDEN, Aage V. Jensen Naturfond and the Danish state – will be put to work on nature projects and thereby ensuring the Danes more nature areas.

The Danish government has just introduced a legislative proposal for the Danish Nature Foundation. The legislation enacts the agreement that was reached last year between VILLUM FONDEN, Aage V. Jensen Naturfond and the majority of parliamentary parties. The result is more nature for Denmark – and a better nature experience for all Danes.

“At VILLUM FONDEN, we are very proud of being co-founders of the Danish Nature Foundation and thereby contributing to ensure that the nature is given an extra push. A self-governing independent foundation established in the field of private and public players is a good base on which we can ensure more resources for nature, and wonderful starting point for a long term and broad-based public commitment. Our inspiration came from the Netherlands and the UK, where national nature foundations have long played an important role for nature protection,” says Lars Hansen, the executive director of VILLUM FONDEN.

“For Aage V. Jensen Naturfond, it is a day of joy. Over the years, we have had a great aspiration for the creation of an independent nature foundation, which everyone can take ownership of and support. We look forward to the benefits the new foundation will undoubtedly bring to Danish nature. We hope for broad support from the various political parties, the public, businesses and private foundations. Furthermore we are very pleased about the fact that the Nature Foundation also sees the establishment of an advisory committee, wherein green organizations, farmer- and forestry organisations, and universities can contribute to the work,” says Leif Skov, president of the Aage V. Jensen Naturfond.

VILLUM FONDEN and Aage V. Jensen Naturfond have especially three reasons for participating in the establishment of the Danish Nature Foundation.

More Nature in Denmark
With the Danish Nature Foundation, Denmark will have a national foundation for nature, where nature comes first. The foundation's activities will improve the state of nature in Denmark. Specifically, this means that the diversity of nature will be strengthened by improving habitats of animals and plants worthy to protect.

 An attractive purpose to support for foundations and private companies
Secondly, the Danish Nature Foundation really opens up for the opportunity for other foundations and companies to support the nature in Denmark. The Nature Foundation's independence will ensure that there is a natural focal point when companies and foundations want to favour nature.
 
Public support is crucial to success
Finally, it was vital that the Danish Nature Foundation should be independent and have a broad public support. VILLUM FONDEN and Aage V. Jensen Naturfond hope that the Danish Nature Foundation will eventually be able to engage the general public in the natural resources in Denmark. So that we will see a development as in e.g. the UK and The Netherlands, where several thousand people actively participate in work with and for nature in similar national natural foundations, and where many private persons also choose to donate money or time to nature.

VILLUM FONDEN and Aage V. Jensen Naturfond are happy on behalf of the Danish nature and they look forward to following the exciting work that the new board of the Danish Nature Foundation will soon begin.

Press inquiries
Executive Director Lars Hansen, VILLUM FONDEN
Phone: +45 2461 1050
President Leif Skov, Aage V. Jensen Naturfond
Phone: +45 4034 9010
Communications advisor for the foundations, Christian Lemvigh
Phone: +45 5372 7283
 
Facts about the Danish Nature Foundation
Over a period of four years (2015-2018), the Danish Nature Foundation builds up initial capital of DKK 875 million. The government has made an agreement with the parties Venstre and Konservative, that the state adds DKK 500 million, VILLUM FONDEN contributes DKK 250 million and Aage V. Jensen Naturfond DKK 125 million.

VILLUM FONDEN
VILLUM FONDEN, a part of THE VELUX FOUNDATIONS, is a non-profit foundation that supports technical and scientific research, environmental, social and cultural purposes in Denmark and internationally. In 2013, VILLUM FONDEN donated DKK 942 million to benevolent purposes. VILLUM FONDEN was founded in 1971 by Villum Kann Rasmussen, who developed the modern skylight VELUX® and established the VKR Group, of which VILLUM FONDEN is the majority shareholder.

Read more about VILLUM FONDEN at www.veluxfoundations.dk
 
Aage V. Jensen Naturfond
Aage V. Jensen Naturfond supports many nature projects in Denmark through research, dissemination and initiatives to increase public enjoyment of nature. In addition, the foundation has acquired a number of Denmark's most important nature reserves, so it has been possible to initiate and execute a targeted nature conservation, restoration and dissemination of nature for the benefit of present and future generations.

Read more about Aage V. Jensen Naturfond at www.avjf.dk