Local law firm Horne Coupar joins the ranks of environmental philanthropists through 1% For The Planet

    The Victoria Foundation works to mobilize local businesses to aid

    VICTORIA, Nov. 6 /CNW/ - The Victoria Foundation today announced that one
of Victoria's oldest law firms, Horne Coupar, has joined 1% for the Planet and
is calling on other local and national businesses to step forward and take a
leadership role in protecting the environment.
    One Percent For The Planet (1% FTP) is an alliance of over 728 companies
from more than 20 countries that are committed to a healthier planet. Members
of 1% FTP commit at least one per cent of their revenue each year to
supporting environmental causes.
    Horne Coupar will make an initial commitment of $10,000 through the
Victoria Foundation and plans to work with the Foundation's Environment
Committee to determine other recipient organizations. From this initial
contribution, the law firm has already decided to donate $5000 to The Land
Conservancy's Endowment Fund, also held in permanence at The Victoria
Foundation. Horne Coupar's annual commitment to 1% FTP is projected to be
"well into five figures." They also are committed to doing annual reviews with
the Foundation and use Victoria's Vital Signs report to ensure the most
important environmental needs are funded in the years ahead.
    "Horne Coupar believes that demonstrating a commitment to the health of
the planet is simply the right thing to do. It also reflects the concern that
many of our estate planning clients share, that our children and grandchildren
will live in a habitable world," says partner Mark Horne. "Whatever the
tipping points might be for continuing inattention to the earth's carrying
capacity for food and water, biodiversity and the quality of human life
generally, concerted action is overdue."
    The Victoria Foundation is one of 158 community foundations committed to
actively promoting 1% FTP across the country. At present, nine community
foundations are already participating in the program - Vancouver, Toronto,
Acadian Peninsula, Stratford and Perth County, Red Deer, the Sunshine Coast,
Phoenix Foundation of the Boundary Communities, Fondation Communautaire de la
Péninsule acadienne and Victoria.
    Victoria Foundation CEO, Sandra Richardson, is thrilled with the
announcement, "Having a well-known and respected legal firm take a leadership
role and sign-on to launch the Victoria Foundation's involvement with 1% For
The Planet shows their commitment to the environment and the broad appeal in
the community for this program."
    In partnership with Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC), the Victoria
Foundation plans to hold informational meetings with local business leaders
and work one-on-one with businesses that want to have a positive impact on the
environment. Today's announcement of Horne Coupar's membership in 1% FTP will
dramatically increase the organization's profile in Victoria and across
Canada. It also underscores the urgent need for Canada's business sector to
play a leadership role in protecting our environment. At the international
level, there are only six law firms involved in 1% FTP, one of which is
located in Kelowna, BC - Schauble (http://www.schauble.ca/). At press time, 1%
FTP had 56 Canadian member businesses.
    Over the last three years, community foundations across Canada have given
a total of $17 million dollars in grants to a wide range of environmental
charities. Since 2003, with the help of the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation,
21 community foundations have placed additional focus on increasing their
endowment building, granting and leadership activities in the environmental
sector. Together they have raised a further $5 million in permanent
environmental endowment funds and in that time period have provided
$2.6 million environmental grants to organizations in their communities.
    "A healthy and sustainable environment is a priority for community
foundations because it underpins every aspect of our quality of life," says
Monica Patten, President and CEO of Community Foundations of Canada. "Today's
announcement is an important way to show business leaders and all Canadians
that we can all have positive impact on our environment."
    In addition to building its environmental endowment fund, the Victoria
Foundation will play a vital role in connecting participating businesses with
the environmental causes that are a good match for their goals. This
announcement will result in a significant increase in financial support for
environmental causes in Victoria.

For further information:

For further information: Shannon Drew-Burrows, Communications Director,
The Victoria Foundation, P: (250) 381-5532, or C: (250) 516-7288,
www.victoriafoundation.bc.ca; Mark Horne, Partner, Horne Coupar Barristers &
Solicitors, P: (250) 388-6631; Fiona Hunter, Partner, Horne Coupar Barristers
& Solicitors, P: (250) 920-6027

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