We are unlike traditional conservation organizations in philosophy, efficiency and results. Our projects are diverse – spanning multiple countries and numerous ecosystems – and we are guided first and foremost by a deep respect for local communities and culture. We’re protecting the areas in South America and Mexico that contain the greatest biodiversity on the planet by collaborating with the people who depend upon the land for their survival.

Why Nature?

Conservation of the Andes-Amazon region of Latin America is critical to our planet’s life-support systemsThe health of tropical forests affects the Earth as a whole. However, we are currently losing them at a rate of 2% annually, giving us just 12-15 years to save what remains of these vanishing ecosystems.

The Andes-Amazon region of Latin America is critical to our planet’s life-support systems, including the natural cycles that produce and renew our air, water, and climate. The Amazon is the world’s largest rainforest and contains half of its species, which provide genetic material for new crops to feed people and medicines to fight disease globally. As it shrinks, so do the potential cures for cancer and other diseases. Because our world and this ecosystem are vitally connected, its preservation concerns everyone.

Likewise, tropical deciduous or dry forests are home to some of the highest levels of endemic species on the planet and are as endangered as the Amazon. When we lose these species, we lose their unique genetic material and carefully crafted role in the web of life, having a ripple effect on entire ecosystems.

Why Culture?

Local people must be engaged and fully committed to sustainable living for conservation to be effectiveWhy do we work with local communities such as farmers, indigenous groups, and fishing villages? Because local people must be engaged and fully committed to sustainable living for conservation to be effective.

We have a deep respect for the people who live in the remarkable places where we work, and have much to gain from their insights. By working with them to cultivate conservation solutions from the ground up, we’re empowering them to take ownership over their land and livelihood.

There is a common misconception that conservation is in conflict with development. While there are challenges to overcome with every project, our work focuses on harmonizing people with nature so that they not only protect it, but benefit from it. In many cases, it is the local communities that approach us for support, because our conservation ethic and philosophy of empowerment resonates with them.