Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Trustees’ Annual Report 2013

Trustee's report

You can download the full version of the Born Free Foundation Trustees' Report + Audited Group Accounts for the year ended 31 March 2013 here >

Chair's Introduction

It gives me great pleasure to introduce the charity’s Trustees’ Annual Report, which sets out, for our supporters and the general public, what we have achieved in the past twelve months and our future plans.

It has been another eventful year, with many important developments in our charitable work. The economic environment continued to be very challenging. The impact on us in previous years had not been as great, we suspect, as for other charities but last year we saw a significant fall in our income.

However, we remain in satisfactory shape financially both because of the strenuous efforts of the team to maintain income levels and control expenditure, as well because of the Foundation’s policy of holding a strategic reserve to meet contingency needs and our ongoing commitments. We entered the year having built up a useful cushion of reserves, the value of which grew well as a result of our disciplined investment strategy and so helped counteract the effects of the decline in revenues raised during the year. Nevertheless, we have had to take into account economic realities in our planning while maintaining our commitment to our vision and long-standing projects.

The section covering the charity’s Strategy and Plans on pages 4 and 5 highlights how we are delivering our charitable objects and our Chief Executive comments in detail on our projects and key achievements on pages 6 to 16 and summarises our animal welfare, conservation and education work.

In many respects, it was an outstanding year for the charity in terms of its campaigning and conservation work. I should like to highlight a number of initiatives that for me demonstrate the range and quality of what we do:

  • CITES*: as part of the Species Survival Network (of which our CEO is the President), Born Free helped in March 2013 secure what is widely regarded by many as the most successful CITES Conference for decades. CITES also received widespread media attention. *Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species
  • Dolphin Release: after over 18 months, Born Free spearheaded the successful rehabilitation and release of Tom and Misha into the sea off Turkey in May 2012.
  • EU Zoo Inquiry: the culmination of over two years’ work involving the assessment of 200 zoos in 20 EU Member States, these reports published in April 2012 highlighted the widespread failure across the EU to put in place minimum standards to prevent unnecessary animal suffering in an estimated 3,500 zoos.
  • Circus Ban in England: the announcement by the Westminster Government that, by the end of 2015, the use of wild animals in travelling circuses would be prohibited in England, secured success after 16 years of effort.
  • Kebri Rescue: the rescue of a young lion from a police station in a remote part of Ethiopia and his transfer to our new rescue centre outside Addis Ababa was a great reminder of Born Free’s commitment to the individual animal.
  • Tiger Tracks. Born Free’s involvement in the successful Tiger Tracks event at St Pancras Station through March 2013 was fundamental to raising both awareness and also very worthwhile funds for our tiger portfolio.
  • Pride of Cape Town: this public awareness and fundraising event in South Africa garnered widespread media coverage concerning the plight of wild lions.
  • Born Free: the award-winning theme song to the classic film Born Free was re-released by Brian May and Kerry Ellis with additional lyrics by Don Black and a supporting campaign film by Mike Slee, featuring Virginia McKenna.

More details of these and other projects will be found on subsequent pages but, of course, none of our achievements would have been possible without our loyal and generous supporters and our many sponsors.

As ever, I would like to thank our staff and our excellent volunteers for their continuing hard work and dedication. Will Travers and his senior team – Alison Hood (Programmes Director), Anne Tudor (Marketing Director), Shirley Galligan (PR Director) and Stephen Chandler (Finance Manager) – provide first-class leadership. In addition, we are exceptionally fortunate that we have so many long service employees, and that our new recruits have not only blended in so well but have absorbed the ethos of what I am pleased to say is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading wildlife charities.

Michael Reyner
Chair of Trustees
Sept 2013


Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

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