The 1001 Club: A Nature Trust is a trust that helps fund the World Wide Fund for Nature. It was established in 1970 by the then head of the WWF, Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands, with help from Anton Rupert, a South African entrepreneur. They persuaded 1001 individuals to join the club, where each member would contribute US $10,000 to the trust. In the early 1970s, Charles de Haes took charge of the operation for reaching $10 million goal, becoming Director General of WWF-International from 1975. The resulting $10 million fund helps to fund the WWF's basic costs of administration.
The 1001 Club has given rise to various conspiracy theories in books and internet forums.Reviewing allegations put forth by Raymond Bonner about the WWF in his 1993 book At the Hand of Man: Peril and Hope for Africa's Wildlife, Ann O'Hanlon of the Washington Monthly wrote: "The secret list of members includes a disproportionate percentage of South Africans, all too happy in an era of social banishment to be welcomed into a socially elite society. Other contributors include businessmen with suspect connections, including organized crime, environmentally destructive development, and corrupt African politics. Even an internal report called WWF's approach egocentric and neocolonialist."
- Stephen Ellis (1994). "Of elephants and men: politics and nature conservation in South Africa". Journal of Southern African Studies 20 (1): 53–69. doi:10.1080/03057079408708386.
- "WWF int the 70's". WWF International. Retrieved 2010-11-30.
- David Hughes-Evans (1984). "Dedication to Charles De Haes". The Environmentalist 4 (1): 2–4. doi:10.1007/BF02337107.
- "WWF International Director Generals 1962-present". WWF International. Retrieved 2010-12-22.
- Ramutsindela, Maano; Spierenburg, Marja; Wels, Harry (2013). "The South—North Connections". Sponsoring Nature: Environmental Philanthropy for Conservation. Routledge. pp. 47, 49. ISBN 9781134040346. Retrieved August 24, 2014.
- Ann O'Hanlon (1993), "At the Hand of Man: Peril and Hope for Africa's Wildlife", book reviews, Washington Monthly 25 (5): 60(subscription required)
- Raymond Bonner (1993). At the Hand of Man: Peril and Hope for Africa's Wildlife. Knopf. pp. 66–75, 76–85. ISBN 0-679-40008-7.; Vintage Books ed., ISBN 0-679-73342-6
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