In our third institutional newsletter as well as in future newsletters, we inform the public about the projects and various activities developed by the Foundation. In addition to compiling news and developments around issues related to biodiversity conservation and the environment in general, the newsletter includes upcoming events.
Over the last few months, our work has focused on the following activities: the improvement of Árbola, the reforestation app; the signing of various cooperation agreements that will be included in Árbola; the participation of the Foundation in various activities carried out by other organisations ; the EOCA competition, in which Árbola made it into the final shortlist; as well as a series of on site visits.
The Red Forestal Foundation concluded the process of updating the App, including new versions in German and English. We also added a counter for sponsored trees. Additionally, design and programming errors from the first version were improved. With the translation of Árbola, we hope to ensure better access to the project for worldwide donors and sponsors.
With our first institutional partner, the Jocotoco Conservation Foundation, we proceeded to sign an additional cooperation agreement in December 2019, to continue developing reforestation projects and expand cooperation between both institutions. The agreement was signed with the aim of enabling donors and sponsors to receive tax-deductible donations through Árbola in the United States of America. The payment platform the Jocotoco Conservation Foundation uses in the USA will be used by Árbola for this purpose.
At the end of December 2019, the Red Forestal Foundation signed a first framework cooperation agreement with the Yakum Foundation. The agreement signed with this organization, which is registered in England, has the aim of reforesting 1,000 trees through Árbola in the community of Sacha Waysa, near the city of Tena. This pilot project aims to plant and grow a fruit forest which will consist of native and endemic trees, in cooperation with the local Quichwa community. This project stands out for its high number of planted species, which are 34 in total. This initiative will also promote the cultural values of the Sacha Waysa community, which also develops projects in ecotourism.
On the 13th of January of the present year, our Foundation signed a framework cooperation agreement with the agroforestry nursery FUCAE and the Piganta Forest, in order to develop and carry out a joint pilot project near Piganta. A total of 1,000 trees are planned to be reforested with the support of local school students in the communities near San José de Minas, Pichincha. This project will directly support environmental education as well as conservation.
On September 24th, 2019, the Red Forestal Foundation successfully participated in the Annual Assembly of the Ibero-American Environmental Network (Red Iberoamericana de Medio Ambiente -REIMA, A.C.) at its facilities in the city of Riobamba. The Red Forestal Foundation is an active member of REIMA, A.C. since the year 2019.
Between October and November 2019, we participated in a funding round organized by the European Outdoor Conservancy Association (EOCA), to reforest a total of 10,000 trees in 2 reserves. The Foundation made it into the final shortlist, being among the 15 finalists out of 75 worldwide. In the final voting round, the necessary votes to win the fund were not achieved. However, we are confident that upon making it into the final shorlist, our application was successful. As of right now, we are currently entering the next funding round, with positive expectations of making it into the final shortlist a second time, having adjusted our strategies according to the obtained experience during our first application round.
The Red Forestal Foundation held a meeting with the banana exporting company Frutierrez Latinoamerican Perishables Ecuador (FLP), the Decentralized Autonomous Government (Gobierno Descentralizado Autónomo, GAD) of the Province of Santo Domingo and the Julio Moreno Water Committee, to assist and assess in the reforestation of 60,000 trees for the protection of the Aquepí and Mapalí river basins. The Foundation intends to georeference the planted trees and arrange for their sponsorship in Árbola, in order to co-finance the process of transforming cattle farms into sylvopastoral initiatives.
The Red Forestal Foundation additionally joined efforts with The Lab, a perfume producing company, which joins the project, sponsoring 1 tree every time someone buys more than 100 USD in one of its 5 stores. In addition, customers of The Lab can add essence to their perfumes, which will be channeled as a donation to the Foundation. As additional support, The Lab helps the Red Forestal Foundation by displaying Árbola´s flyers in their counters. Through this joint project, The Lab becomes the first private company to actively support the initiative.
At the end of July 2019, the Red Forestal Foundation visited the pilot reforestation project in the Buenaventura reserve for a third time. The trees were planted in partnership with the Jocotoco Conservation Foundation. We shot a video and audio interview with Rene Rivas, reforestation coordinator for the Jocotoco Conservation Foundation, to produce an introductory video to the reserve to be included in Árbola.
The video can be seen below:
In the process of inter-organisational relations with Santo Domingo’s GAD, a joint visit was carried out at the end of December 2019 to a Multifunctional Planted Forest project in El Carmen, in order to collect seeds to increase the diversity of species in Santo Domingo’s municipal tree nursery. This initiative indirectly increases the number of species in the province.
Together with the Jocotoco Conservation Foundation and the environmental consultancy company Ecuambiente, the project “Oxygen for the Future” was initiated to reforest one million trees in 12 reserves in the country within the next 3 years. This project aims to offset Ecuador’s carbon emissions in accordance to the accorded objectives at the COP 21 environmental conference. For this purpose, this project will use Árbola as a payment platform for donations and sponsorship of the trees which will be included in this project. This initiative will be implemented in the near future. The aim is to plant 9 million trees by the year 2030.
In cooperation with the Yakum Foundation, preparatory work is being developed to start the pilot project “Pitiritshka”, which will include 1000 trees in the Ecuadorian Amazon. These trees can be sponsored through Árbola, having the possibility to sponsor species that are endangered and threatened.
The Red Forestal Foundation wishes you a happy and green 2020!