Organization

Within the boundaries of the ‘Hoge Kempen’ National Park, several partners from different sectors work together: nature, agriculture, forestry, municipalities, tourism, …

Many different partners cooperated to realise the concept of the ‘Hoge Kempen’ National Park.

The municipalities and the provincial council form the centre of this cooperation. The Flemish Government is responsible for large infrastructural work, necessary for defragmentation, and the purchase of forests and heather.  The promotion of the National Park is done by the local, regional and provincial departments of tourism. Nature and environmental organizations made sure that the residents of the area could participate, for example through voluntary maintenance and the “Rangers”. The catering industry was an important economical pillar for the project. And last, but not least, Tourism Flanders offered their support through pilot projects in durable tourism.

To make sure that all cooperation and negotiation between these partners would go smoothly, the Regional ‘Kempen’ and ‘Maasland’ was asked to create a project agency. Several employees, with different backgrounds (nature, recreation, tourism, communication) work together to establish a common policy for the National Park, for example through an unambiguous strategy for communication and a recognisable set-up for both the ‘Hoge Kempen’ National Park and its gateways. Furthermore, the project agency will organise moments for consultation, it will search for new (financial) possibilities and creates new chances for the different partners.

The project agency receives support from an official Project Management Group and an administrative Steering Committee. Since March 2008, the project agency also receives financial aid from the Agency for Nature and Forestry, a department of the Flemish Government.