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.
Sep 22, 2014

16 Trees in 1 Minute

Angel planting with care and joy
Angel planting with care and joy

LRFF has planted over 8000 trees in the past two months. We have confidence that soon we will be planting this project, "Reforesting the Deforestation" as a sequel to our latest success. Here's an update of our planting activities...who, where and how...don't miss the video link!

On the final day of planting "For The Monkeys", last of the Strack Transportation sponsored projects, we invited the student body of the Jardin de Niños in Delicias de Upala  to help us plant the last 150 trees. Gretchen, Jimmy and I arrived at the school early and we all marched down the street from the school to Elias Cruz's farm, about 50 meters. We picked up Octavio at the local police station, who wanted to be a part of the planting. 

The regular planting crew had a tough time digging the 150 holes fast enough to keep up with the kids distributing the trees and planting them. We also had 16 trees to plant, purchased by residents of the Commune Utopia in Second Life. We marched to another area of the planted corridor that had been set aside for the 16 trees and that's where the 16 trees planted in 1 minute video comes from. 

Santiago works for Elias on both his properties. We planted portions of both one in Chimurria and the other in Delicias, Upala. During the nursery growing and subsequent planting his wife, Trina, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Santiago was very proud of the fencing and planting work he was instrumental in. He was Jimmy's right hand man. Trina passed away two days after the children finished the planting in July. Gretchen caught the magical moment when a beautiful butterfly landed on Santi's arm and didn't want to leave (see photos).

Daniel Spreen, President and Co-Founder of LRFF/CR, was unable to participate in the planting or pre-planting activities due to a serious illness. There were shovels and plastic boxes that we'd left out in Delicias the final day because they were still needed by the planting crew to finish up. Two weeks after the last trees were planted Dan felt well enough to travel and we went to recover the equipment and plant four trees for another resident and follower of LRFF in Second Life.

Jimmy and Yamileth planted trees for Brugos, we loaded up and all left one last time on the most excellent road trip back home to La Reserva. Most excellent because of the amazing landscape. West between the narrow valley between two massive volcanoes, Miravalles and Tenorio, then south on a well traveled dirt road to Tierras Morenas and Lake Arenal where the La Reserva Forest Foundation is headquartered in Costa Rica.   

The perfect ending to an amazing journey...from our first meeting with Matt Strack 1 1/2 years ago to the climax of actually getting all of his trees in the ground (9500+). Thanks to all of you and to you Matt for believing in LRFF and taking responsibility for the GHG emissions your businesses activities generate.  

Tree planters heading o
Tree planters heading o
Octavio with three planters
Octavio with three planters
Passing out trees to waiting hands
Passing out trees to waiting hands
Women planting, HOT
Women planting, HOT
Santiago with friend in magical moment
Santiago with friend in magical moment
One more tree planted
One more tree planted
Hard work hauling trees to plant
Hard work hauling trees to plant
Daniel, making a comeback
Daniel, making a comeback
Jimmy and Yami planting Brugo
Jimmy and Yami planting Brugo's trees

Links:

Aug 11, 2014

San Luis Forest Thanks You, Once Again

Mariano receiving his annual PES check
Mariano receiving his annual PES check

Thanks to YOU this project has been funded once more and almost exactly one year since it was posted on GlobalGiving in August 2013. This is a record, most definitely and we can’t begin to express our gratitude for supporting this pristine and beloved local forest, one of the last left standing.

Mariano was thrilled to receive his Payment for Environment Services check and plans to make improvements to his farm and purchase school clothing and supplies for his children.

Before we gave Mariano his check, however, we went for a walk in the forest to make sure everything is untouched. We call it an inspection but that doesn’t sound very fun. Check out the photos of YOUR forest…it’s removing over 200 metric tons of GHG emissions out of our atmosphere annually and storing it. As long as the forest stays so does the carbon (except the natural decomposition processes in the forest ecosystem).

You are well on your way to being carbon neutral and we will do this every year for Mariano and YOU. Please watch for this project again, I’m re-upping it for the 2014 – 2015 PES’s. We are raising the yearly stipend on all PES’s that are being paid to $100/hectare/year, as well.

San Luis forest trail
San Luis forest trail
Tarzan swing = natural fun
Tarzan swing = natural fun
Lake Arenal shore line, water level down this year
Lake Arenal shore line, water level down this year
Big Fig in the San Luis forest
Big Fig in the San Luis forest

Links:

Jul 30, 2014

SUCCESSFUL EDUCATIONAL REFORESTATION PROJECT

Passing out trees to be planted
Passing out trees to be planted

Since our last report we haven’t been sitting around. LRFF has planted over 6000 trees and many of those trees have been collected and planted by local school children in the communities we serve. These are our “stakeholders”, the Guardians of the Future Forests.

The entire student body at the local Jardin de Niños learned why tropical forests are important and how to implement a native reforestation project step by step. First we gave an entertaining presentation about tropical forests and the next week the students came to the La Reserve forest preserve to experience the rich biodiversity of a virgin forest and learn how to collect tree seedlings from the forest floor. They planted these in the nursery we helped them create from recycled containers at the school. Six months from that day (we figure November 2014) we will plant the 200 trees in the side yard of the school to increase the tree species diversity and provide a “living” classroom for future students.

Then on July 17th we planted the last of the 6000 trees in the “For The Monkeys” project. This is the last of the three-project combo that Strack Premier Transportation has been sponsoring in their Give Back With Strack” Initiative to offset all of the limousine company’s 2013 GHG emissions. 

It was a great day, all planned. Gretchen, Jimmy and I arrived at the little elementary school in the center of the village of Delicias. The student body followed us, single file, to the entrance of Elias Cruz’s farm where the final area was waiting to be planted. Even the local police chief came to help out. When we got to the entrance that was the end of single file, the boys took off running to the horror of their teachers who were accompanying us.

The holes were dug and I passed out baby trees to the kids to distribute at each hole. When that was accomplished we all planted the 150 final trees in less than 20 minutes. We walked over to a small area reserved for planting 16 trees purchased for the Commune Utopia in the virtual world of Second Life. Watch the video, we planted 16 trees in just 1 minute.  

The happy ending to all of this…the neighbor adjacent to the corridor we just planted on Elias’s property is now waiting for us to fund his own little project of 1½ hectare (4 acres). It will connect and increase the habitat for the monkeys even more. The property is also right across the street in front of the school and Fabio, the owner of the property, is a director of schools working for the Ministry of Education in San Jose.

Another snowball effect of our work…the police chief took us to an even smaller village nearby on the Nicaraguan border where the school wants to reforest the schoolyard of 1 hectare (2 ½ acres) and create a 15 meter biological on the San Ramon river passing through the community of the same name. The environmental destruction in this area has been hidden from view and something must happen soon to save the river and the small lake that’s drying up at nearby Camilla Reserve.

You see, we’ve been busy and this Liberia project is the same story. When it is funded we will get started restoring the University of Liberia’s research forest and then the snowball effect will enable us all to restore all of the beautiful forests that have been destroyed there causing so much sickness, suffering and lack of ecological diversity in this war torn country. Come on everyone…

LET’S GET PLANTING!

Heading out to plant some trees
Heading out to plant some trees
Police chief and the boys, been planting
Police chief and the boys, been planting
Selfie with the kids
Selfie with the kids

Links:

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