Employees from ABN AMRO Bank Jersey have been helping to improve the enclosure facilities at Durrell.
Four groups of staff have each volunteered their time by contributing to labour intensive tasks and improving various areas of the park. Gorilla hammock making, removing debris and cleaning/decorating the gorilla living areas were appointed to two separate groups. The Red River Hog enclosure underwent a major refurbishment with the team shovelling 19 tons of hoggin to lay new ground cover for the hogs to enjoy. The Kirindy Kabin viewing area has also been redecorated for the enjoyment of visitors.
Apart from a few aches and pains the ABN AMRO Bank Jersey employees came through unscathed.
‘We all worked fantastically well as a team to move a large amount of gravel in a such a short period of time and gave ourselves enough time to move on to the gorilla enclosure as well. It was really hard work but thoroughly fulfilling,’ said Claire Dempsey, Senior Credit Structuring Officer, at ABN AMRO Bank Jersey.
Lee Rimeur, Senior Relationship Manager at ABN AMRO Bank Jersey, added: ‘It was a truly memorable experience and extremely rewarding, regardless of the aches and pains that lingered for the rest of the working week.’
To help mark its 40th anniversary, the bank has partnered with Durrell. One of ABN AMRO’s core values is sustainability – one also held by the charitable trust – and a number of sponsorships and initiatives have been planned to help consolidate the two organisations’ shared ethics. Further staff social engagement tasks have been planned for the remainder of the year to allow all ABN AMRO staff the opportunity to partake.
To launch the partnership with Durrell, ABN AMRO Bank provided funding for two international students to take part in a 12-week DESMAN programme in May. The sponsorship part-funded the course costs, food and accommodation required for the students to participate in the scheme. The programme was designed to equip conservation professionals from underprivileged backgrounds with a range of skills to maximise their effectiveness at managing or participating in conservation projects worldwide.
In September, ABN AMRO Bank will also become the first corporate sponsor of the annual Durrell Conservation Symposium, to provide key members of Durrell and its overseas team with a chance to discuss significant developments and research projects from the previous year.