Million trees back
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: OUR PRIORITY, OUR DREAM
Corpoayapel is a non-profit organization promoting sustainable development of the Ayapel Marsh Complex and associated communities.
The Ayapel Marsh Complex is only second in importance to the Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta. Ayapel marks the easternmost limit of the Mojana Depression, the most important floodplain in the country. Its great biodiversity includes 194 bird species, including 64 migratory species that arrive from the United States and Canada every year.
CORPOAYAPEL set out to chase a dream and named it “Un millón de árboles de vuelta” (Bringing a million trees back). Aiming at rehabilitating in a participatory manner the Ayapel Marsh Complex, the project foresees the involvement of local and external actors in the recuperation, preservation and protection of the area’s natural ecosystems.
In 2017, we were granted USD $11,212 from different individuals who donated through GlobalGiving to enable us to nurse 3363 trees to be planted between April and May, 2018. Seeds collected and shared by the community were used to this end and, most importantly, 34 forest-keeping families will care for the seedlings and see they develop into fully grown trees. Families will receive economic incentives for their efforts in transplanting and caring for the trees, ensuring further commitment to fulfill for our initiative. Chosen families live on the banks of canals and tributaries of the wetland system.
Corpoayapel Prioritizes the Environment in 2017
The organization realized the environment was a major issue in Ayapel. A large-scale strategy for leading and articulating entities at the local, regional and national levels was required to achieve the protection and rehabilitation the marsh complex requires. To this end, we took advantage of existing initiatives and established four action lines: rehabilitation research; RAMSAR conservation implementation; participatory restoration; and environmental education.
The Ayapel Marsh Complex Is Declared a RAMSAR Site
On February 2, 2018 and in the context of the World Wetlands Day, the Minister of Environment of Colombia, Luis Gilberto Murillo, declared the Ayapel Marsh Complex a protected area under the RAMSAR Convention. Thereby, Colombia entered a commitment involving all of its governmental bodies and agencias to protect and recuperate the wetlands and floodplains of Ayapel. Moreover, it opened the door for Corpoayapel to access international cooperation resources.
ConTREEbute Partnership – Bringing a Million Trees Back
ON 2017, Corpoayapel decided to move forward, to turn research into action. We forged a partnership with conTREEbute and created a sound plan to bring back one million trees to the marsh. ConTREEbute has also been a valuable ally in securing funding to make this now-shared dream come true.
Building of a Tree Nursery
SURA Group, through Fundación SURA, made a first contribution for COP $100 million. This made possible the design and creation of a tree nursery, along with all the necessary logistics to begin production of tree saplings of native species. Today, 10,000 saplings have matured and are ready for transplantation, to be carried out between April and March. We are looking forward to getting the necessary funding to nurse and plant over 50,000 trees in 2018.
Further Partnerships Ahead
Here at Corpoayapel, we are working towards creating alliances and partnerships with well-recognized institutions and corporations to develop our environmental projects. Thanks to this, we are able to increase impact, scope and reach of our implementations. Some of our partners include:
· Conservation International
· Ministry of Environment of Colombia
· Autonomous Regional Corporation of the Sinú and San Jorge River Valleys (CVS)
· Palmarito-Casanare Foundation
· University of Antioquia
· SURA Foundation
Students learning about "million trees back"
Forest warden families