Castries, Saint Lucia, Thursday, June 22, 2023 - On Wednesday June 21, 2023, Republic Bank (EC) Limited announced a groundbreaking partnership with the Saint Lucia National Conservation Fund (SLUNCF) to support the conservation and sustainability of ecosystems and species within Saint Lucia. The press announcement took place at the Harbor Club in Rodney Bay.
The Republic Bank Sustainability Fund – Saint Lucia, through which the Bank has pledged a sum of XCD 750,000 to the partnership over a five-year period under its Corporate Social Responsibility Programme – The Power to Make A Difference (PMAD), will serve as the medium for financing projects that focus on conservation, sustainability, and protection of Saint Lucia's ecosystems and species.
Over the next five years, the partnership will focus to support projects that conserve, protect, and maintain the biological diversity and natural resources in Saint Lucia, starting with Biodiversity Protection and Sustainability of Livelihoods for 2023. Each year, Republic Bank and the SLUNCF will jointly select projects that have a significant positive impact on the natural environment, with the aim of financing them through the Fund.
At the press announcement, Republic Bank (EC) Limited’s Managing Director Michelle Palmer remarked that “Through our joint efforts, we are poised to contribute to safeguarding Saint Lucia's stunning natural beauty, its rich biodiversity, and its invaluable cultural heritage.” She further stated that “At Republic, we take our Corporate Social Responsibility seriously, The Power to Make Difference program is a testament to that commitment.”
Republic Bank has been working towards its 2020 promise to align with the Paris Agreement, the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI), and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It has emerged as a frontrunner in promoting environmental responsibility, being the only Caribbean-domiciled financial signatory to the UNEP FI Principles for Responsible Banking and a founding member of the UN-convened Net Zero Banking Alliance. Republic Bank has set ambitious climate finance goals and established resilient infrastructure across the fourteen territories in which it operates. The Bank's Power to Make a Difference (PMAD) initiative, formally launched last year in the OECS, showcases its strong commitment to corporate social responsibility in the region.
According to SLUNCF’s Chairwoman, Karolin Troubetzkoy, “The partnership between Republic Bank and SLUNCF is a natural fit, as both organizations share a common purpose: to promote and preserve Saint Lucia's natural resources and biodiversity”. She further remarked that “Equally important for both SLUNCF and Republic Bank is reaching out to our communities and working closely with them in an effort to build capacities for the creation of sustainable livelihoods.”
The SLUNCF will be responsible for awarding grants from the Fund while also ensuring effective project monitoring, management, and assessment in accordance with its Grantmaking Framework (Sub-Grant Policy and Procedures).
In his remarks, SLUNCF’s Chief Executive Officer, Craig Henry stated “This collaboration makes possible invaluable and strategic investments to support sustainability within our local community.”
While this partnership is limited to projects within Saint Lucia, the scope of projects considered will align with principles of environmental sustainability, natural resource management, livelihood development, climate change, and human capacity building. For this year, focus will be on projects that support improved food security, sustainable livelihoods, biodiversity protection, and nature-based solutions in Saint Lucia.
Eligible applicants for funding include government agencies, registered local NGOs, community-based organizations, private businesses, local community associations, local universities or colleges, and other appropriate local entities of Saint Lucia.
To submit a project for consideration, interested parties are to respond to the upcoming Call for Proposals from the SLUNCF, which will be publicly announced on July 03, 2023. The application details, submission process, and timeline will be made available on this date on SLUNCF's and Republic Bank's websites at www.sluncf.org and www.republicbankstlucia.com/pmad.
About Republic Bank (EC) Limited Republic Bank is one of the premier financial institutions in the region, specializing in financial products or services. With a commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Corporate Social Responsibility through our Power to Make A Difference programme, we strive to make a positive impact on local communities and the environment. For more information, visit https://www.republicbankstlucia.com/news.
About the SLUNCF The Saint Lucia National Conservation Fund (SLUNCF) is dedicated to the conservation, restoration, and effective management of Saint Lucia’s biodiversity and natural resource which also includes working towards and building national capacity for the creation of sustainable livelihoods. The SLUNCF was established as not-for-profit incorporation in 2016 and is part of a network of regional conservations trust funds forming a Caribbean region sustainable finance architecture, at the core, which is the CBF, and whose main aim is to act as a long-term conservation finance mechanism for nationally determined biodiversity and natural resource conservation priorities.