SIDNEY, BC – Raincoast Conservation Foundation
Having launched a campaign to raise $500,000 in late November to end commercial trophy hunting in an area of more than 2,300 square kilometres of British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest (GBR), the Raincoast Conservation Foundation and Coastal First Nations have now received significant support from local companies. Combined with donations from the public, Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics and Denman Island Chocolate have now secured $150,000 towards the target.
Campaigning to end trophy hunting in British Columbia last year, Lush donated 100% of the sale of a limited edition Great Bear Bath Bomb , designed by Kitasoo artist Jeff Robinson, to several US and Canadian organizations protecting grizzly bears.
“Our customers across North America were shocked to learn that trophy hunting of grizzly bears was occurring in British Columbia and were quick to join us in supporting Raincoast’s effort to end commercial trophy hunting in the Great Bear Rainforest with $100,000 towards the purchase of commercial hunting licenses,” says Tricia Stevens, Manager of Charitable Giving for Lush North America. “We’re excited this is becoming a reality and with this amazing surge in support we’ll be closer to fully protecting bears, wolves and other large carnivores.”
In addition to the bath bomb, Denman Island Chocolate has been selling a unique Grizzly Bar and, with donations from the public, the total raised now stands at close to $150,000.
“It’s inspiring that local companies have been able to contribute in such a significant way. We know the public is overwhelmingly in support of ending trophy hunting and passionate about wildlife conservation. We hope this public support can help us raise half the needed funds -$250,000 – by the end of 2017,” said Brian Falconer, guide outfitter coordinator for Raincoast. “The Nadeea hunting tenure includes some of the region’s most iconic watersheds and internationally important habitat for grizzlies, black bears, Spirit bears, wolves, cougars and wolverine. Safeguarding wildlife in this area will represent a major conservation success,” adds Falconer.
“Ending trophy hunting of large carnivores supports our community’s significant investment in wildlife viewing and eco-tourism.” said Doug Neasloss, elected chief of the Kitasoo/Xai’xais First Nation. “Nadeea is the traditional name of the biggest mountain in the area and means ’where there is ever lasting snow.’ We have stories and a children’s lullaby about that mountain. It is a place where the bears sleep.”
Coupled with the province’s ban on grizzly hunting, purchasing the remaining commercial trophy hunting rights in the Great Bear Rainforest is key a step towards Raincoast’s goal of ending all large carnivore trophy hunting on the coast of British Columbia.