Corcovado Foundation

Mission The Corcovado Foundation is a key player in the strengthening of the protected wild areas, the promotion of environmental education, sustainable tourism and community participation throughout the sustainable use of the natural resources in the South Pacific area of Costa Rica.
Mar 18, 2014

Creating awareness about our natural heritage

MINAE
MINAE's officials at the meeting

The Santa Juana Rural Mountain Project; creating awareness among local communities about their natural heritage. 

“Trees looked more red than green” that is what Don Efraen recalled, one of the first settlers in Santa Juana, about the macaws population in this area.   Approximately 50 years ago this same corridor, Fila Chonta, had a healthy population of Macaws that completely disappeared primarily caused by hunters and smugglers of tropical birds.

 The community of Santa Juana recently hosted representatives of the Ministry of Natural Resources (MINAE) to a meeting with their own members from the School, Water and Church committees interested in pursuing permission to release and care of several pairs of young Scarlet Macaws. The program will be managed by volunteers from the village itself and is a program under review by the Ara Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to protect the Macaw populations in Costa Rica.  

According to Jim Damalas, General Manager of Greentique Hotels, “Because of the continued revenues generated by the tours to Santa Juana, as well as the guest donations from Si Como No Resort in Manuel Antonio and additional donations received through the Corcovado Foundation and Globalgiving, the community has become very aware of the importance of protecting the many natural attractions that generate tourist revenues and donations for the community’s development.”

With an amazing 75% attendance of the community to this meeting with MINAE, it was one more example of the prevalent importance in conserving and enhancing the biodiversity of this part of the mountain corridor of Talamanca, and in return creating more benefits for their village, their families, and preserving also the heritage of Costa Rica.

Community Members
Community Members
Mar 5, 2014

Help desperately needed to save Drake Bay's sea turtles! Emergency call for donations!

Emergency call for donations. 

Just four months remain before this endangered species returns to the region to nest, and there is currently no guarantee that they can be protected from the threat of poaching.

The community in Drake Bay urgently need support from private donors in order to mobilize their volunteer program, support their local guides and research assistants, and purchase vital conservation equipment and consumables.

In 2014, the program plans to continue transferring responsibility for the program to local hands, and equip the local team with all of the skills, knowledge and training to maintain the conservation effort in the future.

The villagers are so close to achieving their goal of a self-sufficient community-led program, and it would be such a waste to have to postpone this critical phase in their development until 2015.

For eight years the Corcovado Foundation has successfully secured funding to support the villagers in Drake Bay to protect their sea turtles. Starting from humble beginnings, this program has grown into a highly effective and professional community-led initiative that provides protection to 7km of pristine coastline.

The Foundation, alongside locals and international volunteers, with do their best to limit the damage done by poachers this year, but without dedicated funding it will be impossible to provide the level of protection needed by these turtles.

We are calling out to everyone who has ever visited Drake Bay or donated money to the program in the past, and to anyone else who wants to make a difference a help to save an endangered species: please pledge whatever you can to the plight of the sea turtles and make sure that we don’t lose the battle against egg poaching this year.

Mar 5, 2014

Empowering young leaders in the Osa Peninsula

Turtle Festival
Turtle Festival

The Drake Bay area in the Osa Peninsula is probably the most beautiful place in Costa Rica, at least that is our opinion at the Corcovado Foundation. The communities that live in this amazing place are sometimes little unmindful about its beauty, its incredible biodiversity and its fragility.  Our environmental education program strives to create awareness, especially among children, about the particularities of their surroundings and the incredible heritage that they have received.

Due to its coastal location, many tourism-related activities in Drake Bay take place on the water, including the transportation of supplies for hotels. As such, we have focused our efforts on the protection of the marine environment. Many of the children that we work with one day will become boat captains, guides, dive masters, or tour leaders, so we are promoting responsible practices through our environmental education program. How do we create mindful citizens? How can we promote a responsible and active role for children, so that in the future they feel empowered and motivated to take proactive steps toward conservation? It is a big challenge!

We want to start by promoting good leadership values: sharing, standing up for what you believe in,  supporting your peers and their interests, loving, protecting the defenseless, and conserving nature.

For the last ten years we have taught environmental education in schools in the Osa Peninsula, incorporating it permanently into their curriculum, and for the last five years we have maintained several out-of-school youth groups in the villages. These last three months we organized several activities with these groups in order to promote these values. We hosted Christmas parties with children in two underprivileged communities, held two environmental festivals, and coordinated weekly meetings and activities to try to help foster a generation of more environmentally mindful children.

During the Tree Festival, our five environmental groups spent two days together playing and learning about trees, wild animals, and how to live together more sustainably.

The Sea Turtle Festival was another grand event. Organized by our turtle conservation team, it gathered 200 people from all over the regions – hoteliers, tourists and members of local communities – who enjoyed all kinds of artistic performances, games and competitions, and cultural and environmental events.  The highlights of the day were the children’s presentations. Their songs, plays and  messages invited their parents to protect their environment, to stop turtle egg poaching, to plant trees, to refrain from hunting, and to love nature.

The children of Drake Bay are the future environmental leaders of these communities, and we need to make sure that we inspire them, support them, and provide them with the resources they need so that they can change their communities and the world. And they will.

Please help us to maintain our program by making a donation to our environmental education program. We are striving to produce the environmental leaders that will protect this amazing place:  The Osa Peninsula.

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