La Reserva Forest Foundation

La Reserva Forest Foundation is a Costa Rican non-profit, tax exempt foundation working to restore and preserve native tropical forests, dedicated to creating "tree bridges" linking isolated forest islands using volunteers and the local school communities, and fighting global warming through various carbon neutral projects.
Jan 14, 2011

THIS IS MONUMENTAL

Spiral petroglyph behind rancho Maleku
Spiral petroglyph behind rancho Maleku

El Farallon National Monument preservation project ties in with the work we are doing with the Maleku Indian tribe because of the petroglyphic images displayed on the high bluff alongside the river within the Lopez brothers farm where the national monument is contained.

Please see the accompanying photo of a petroglyph outside the old “rancho” where the Maleku Tribal Council convene. This same spiral image is seen many times on the bluff at El Farallon.

The indigenous people from this northern area of Costa Rica were Chibchan. They traveled long distances on foot trading with other tribes, throughout Central America and Mexico. I believe that the El Farallon site was a stop along the road for the Maleku, just one tribe of the Chibchan people from so long ago.

By supporting this project you will preserve 48 hectares (110+ acres) of tropical dry forest and help the Lopez family maintain the national monument’s access so that more people can be inspired by the indigenous wisdom. We only have $1500 left to see this project funded. LET’S GET PLANTING!

Faces petroglyph at El Farallon Natl. Monument
Faces petroglyph at El Farallon Natl. Monument

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Jan 14, 2011

THE WELCOME RANCHO

The old worn out rancho covered in plastic
The old worn out rancho covered in plastic

This is the translation of the “Rancho Bienvenido” project, but it is also the name of the Vice-President and elder member of the Maleku Tribal Council, Bienvenido Cruz Castro. We met Bienvenido over one year ago when he told us of the Maleku tribe’s situation concerning the loss of their ancestral lands and their heartfelt desire to restore the forests that have been destroyed at the hands of non-indigenous landowners.

The Maleku people depend on the forest for resources to live their traditional life style. Everything for their housing is found in the forest, much of their food and even the bait used for fishing come from the fruit of a native rainforest tree.

The Maleku Tribal Council needs a new traditional “rancho” for their frequent meetings, receptions for important visitors and ceremonial rituals. This past December representatives from Sole Technology, makers of Etnies shoes, came for a day of meetings and lunch at the Maleku Reserve. Etnies is the major contributor for the Rio Sol Biological Corridor, planting 35,000 trees in a contiguous native tree corridor along the river. For this important meeting Bienvenido’s sons had to cover the old rancho with a large sheet of plastic to help keep the thatched roof from leaking.

The Tribal Council is hosting another important day of meetings with the CEO of Sole Technology and Vice-President of Sales and Operations at the beginning of February and then a huge international media event in March to launch the new “Buy a Shoe, Plant a Tree” project that Etnies shoes is promoting with their spring line of tennis shoes. Let’s help them have a headquarters to be proud of before March. It takes less than a week to build it with all natural materials.

Maleku meeting Sole Technology reps
Maleku meeting Sole Technology reps
Traditional Earth ceremony for Sole Tech
Traditional Earth ceremony for Sole Tech

Links:

Jan 14, 2011

TRAVELING THE SOL RIVER

Filling bags in the new nurseries
Filling bags in the new nurseries

The Rio Sol Biological Corridor project has already received some donations. The 35 hectare forest restoration project was inspired by Sole Technology, the makers of Etnies shoes and our friends the Maleku Indians of Guatuso. Roian Atwood, Corporate Sustainability Manager for Sole, who has been watching LRFF’s progress since 2009, contacted us in October to say that Sole Technology had approved a generous donation to plant 35,000 trees. We spoke to Roian about our work with the Maleku and the company decided that they would ideally like to plant the trees on the Maleku reserve, the first of many projects to recuperate their ancestral territory and reforest 2/3 of it.

Last week the first nurseries were created on the properties of Alexis and Isidro, two Maleku landowners along the Sol River. Alexis is planting almost 4000 seedlings in his new nursery and Isidro is planting 1000. This is accomplished by filling the nursery bags with fresh dirt, going out into the forests that still exist in the surrounding area to collect seedlings from the forest floor and then replanting them in the nursery.

Something very exciting happened last past week….we have found a source of BIODEGRADABLE PLASTIC NURSERY BAGS. We have placing our first order for 20,000 today and they will be ready within two weeks. The use of non-biodegradable plastic nursery bags in the past has always bothered us. One of LRFF’s values is that we walk lightly upon the Earth. On all of our planting projects we collect all of the plastic nursery bags left behind but that has left us with 100 lb. sacks of plastic bags that NEVER biodegrade. Even though we pick them all up there is still the problem of how to dispose of them. Now we will be able to bury the bags in the ground after we remove the trees and they will disappear over time.

Sole Technology has donated enough funding to pay for 35,000 trees, but LRFF must come up with matching donations to cover the planting and maintenance for the next two years. This is why we call upon all of you to please consider contributing to this extremely worthwhile project. LET’S GET PLANTING!!

Sol River at flood stage. Forests prevent flooding
Sol River at flood stage. Forests prevent flooding

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