FUNDACIÓN CONSERVACIONISTAS COMPROMETIDOS DEL ECUADOR
(COMMITTED CONSERVATIONISTS OF ECUADOR FOUNDATION)
The Foundation was formed in January 2006, with the following GOALS:
1) To work to assure the protection of tropical and subtropical forests, and other natural environments (e.g. paramos) in Ecuador. The work is particularly oriented to the private sector, and includes the provision of subsidized legal help in cases of land invasion, problems with legal documents, and the elaboration of management plans for privately protected areas.
2) To work on broad educational goals to raise awareness of the necessity for land protection, sustainable resource use, etc in local populations.
3) To administrate land during legal battles over legitimate land ownership.
4) The purchase of land for permanent ownership of the Foundation is an important option.
5) To actively participate in efforts for legislation in favour of land protection.
In January 2006, two main PROGRAMMES were initiated:
a) Protection of land in the Tandayapa / San Jose valleys threatened by land invasion, ongoing at the time of writing. This means legal protection, and action to physically protect the land. The story is complex, but in short a neighbour´s land has been invaded because she has kept the land without working it (or hardly even visiting it) for many years. If we do not help protect this neighbour´s land then the next invasion will be ours, or on neighbouring land where protection is also the main goal. And land invaders are not easy to deal with. This work is URGENT.
Such actions will continue elsewhere. Among other possible future programmes, work needs to be done to halt deforestation in Sangay National Park.
b) Education efforts: a fund has been initiated to raise money to cover transport for school groups to nature reserves for a day visit with guided tour on the lines of broad “environmental education”. The point is this: a minimum entrance fee / guide fee needs to be charged to all visitors to nature reserves, since to charge no fee at all is to encourage a lack of respect for something that might thus be considered of no value because of no cost. Transport costs are sometimes what prevent some schools from visiting nature reserves, which are frequently away from public transport routes, and thus require exclusive transportation.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
Membership of the Foundation costs US$20 / year. This gives you 3 newsletters a year, and for local people, access to subsidized legal help for land issues. Greater contributions for the various goals of the Foundation will be gratefully received – money can be earmarked for what you consider priority.
TAX-DEDUCTIBLE? Membership fees or higher contributions?
The goal is to be able to work out US tax deductibility of contributions in near future.
Please ask guides or management staff for further info about the Foundation.