What we do

Here we are presenting you the conservation projects we are currently carrying out in different places in the Los Tuxtlas region. Forest of Interbeing is a project based 100 % on voluntary work. In order to being able to realize our work we depend on donations, mostly from private citizens. We are committed to use these resources in a transparent way, therefore, here you can find detailed documentation of our revenues and expenditure in the first three years of the project’s existence. We realize different activities in order to raise funds, like Crowdfunding campaigns and the production and selling of handcrafted items in local markets.

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Victoria Rosas selling handcrafted items in Catemaco.

Thanks to the donations of our supporters we have been able to realize the following activities:

  1. Awareness raising and reforestation in schools
  2. Reforestation and conservation of cloud forest in Santa Rosa Abata
  3. Conservation of headwater areas in Chuniapan de Arriba
  4. Community-based conservation project Anolis in Benito Juárez, Catemaco
  5. Support for reforestation on private and community land
  6. Tree nurseries
  7. Protection of sea turtles

 

1. Awareness raising and reforestation in schools

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Reforestation with students of the UGM Norte, San Andrés Tuxtla

We visit schools in the region in order to do awareness raising and, in most cases, we combine this activity with the planting of trees in the schoolyards, so the students learn directly how to do reforestation. In the future these trees will give the schools shade, fresh air and protection against noise. Until now, we have worked with the following schools:

  • Centro de Atención Múltiple de Educación Especial (CAM), Catemaco
  • Escuela Secundaria y de Bachilleres Dr. Isaac Ochoterena (ESBIO), San Andrés Tuxtla
  • Escuela Secundaria Técnica Agropecuaria (ETA), Sihuapan, San Andrés Tuxtla
  • Instituto Tecnológico Superior de San Andrés Tuxtla (ITSSAT)
  • Jardín de Niños Alegría, Ranchoapan, San Andrés Tuxtla
  • Primaria Lic. Andrés Quintana Roo, Moloacán
  • Secundaria Manuel Acuña, Texalpan de Abajo, San Andrés Tuxtla
  • Secundaria Salvador Díaz Mirón, Catemaco
  • Secundaria Técnica Industrial, Catemaco
  • Telebachillerato Los Mangos, Hueyapan de Ocampo
  • Telesecundaria Justo Sierra, Comoapan, San Andrés Tuxtla
  • Telesecundaria Cuauhtemoc, Chuniapan de Arriba, San Andrés Tuxtla
  • Telesecundaria Santa Rosa Loma Larga, Hueyapan de Ocampo
  • Universidad del Golfo de México (UGM) Norte, Campus San Andrés Tuxtlas

2. Reforestation and conservation of cloud forest in Santa Rosa Abata

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Friends from Wake Up in Mexico City walking alongside the conservation area in Santa Rosa Abata.

We support the conservation of cloud forest in the area close to the volcano San Martín Tuxtla, in Santa Rosa Abata. It is a refugium for several endangered species like the black-mantles howler monkey (Alouatta palliata), the Great Curassow (Crax rubra), or the Fer-de-Lance (Bothrops asper). We support the local farmer Nicolás Malaga who was bought nine hectares of forest land only to protect it. On another five hectares he is reforesting with native tree species. In the beginning he received subsidies from the government, but due to political reasons this program wasn’t continued. We support him economically so he can keep doing his important work and, regularly, we take visitors to the place to get to know it and give donations to the Malaga family; in addition we achieved that they were supported with material for reforestation by the governmental program CONANP-PROCER. In 2016, finally we were able to buy one hectare of forest in this area ourselves in order to protect it.

Click here to see photos of our work in cooperation with the Malaga family and of our protected area.

3. Conservación of headwater areas in Chuniapan de Arriba

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Christoph Neger with inhabitants from Chuniapan de Arriba in the entrance to the nature reserve owned by the municipality San Andrés Tuxtla.

We assist the inhabitants of the village Chuniapan de Arriba, municipality San Andrés Tuxtla, in the conservation of tropical forest areas in the catchment area of the Chuniapan river with the objective to ensure the water supply for an area with about 5,700 inhabitants, to protect the villages and agricultural land of the area from flooding and to protect the local fauna and flora, for instance, the White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), the Northern tamandua (Tamandua mexicana) and a big variety of birds. In 2014 we achieved that the community assembly of Chuniapan de Arriba declared 20 hectare of the common land as a nature reserve. In addition, the people of the community are involved in the conservation and surveillance of a nature reserve owned by the municipality with an extension of 130 hectare.

We have bought material for reforestation and the protection of forest areas with live fences. In 2015 we also achieved that the community Chuniapan de Arriba was supported with material for reforestation by the government program CONANP-PROCER and we obtained donations of trees from private tree nurseries to the community. In 2017, people from Chuniapan de Arriba could participate in the capacity-building workshop “Conservation Work  and Soul Restoration in Areas Reforested by Defenders of the Environment of Los Tuxtlas”, financed by the CONAFOR.

Click here to see photos of our work in Chuniapan de Arriba.

4. Community-based conservation project Anolis in Benito Juárez, Catemaco

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Jessica Swanson handing out material for reforestation to Arnulfo Castillo from Anolis

In Benito Juárez, municipality of Catemaco, in 2008 the group Anolis was formed which has the aim of protecting the community’s natural resources, especially a protected area of 35 hectares. The group has been assisted by various organization, like the ADO foundation, and is participating in the reintroduction of the Scarlet Macaw in Los Tuxtlas, a project guided by the Biology Institute of the National Autonomous University of Mexico.

Until now, in this project we haven’t given financial support from our own resources (apart from transportation costs), however, we have obtained material for reforestation for Anolis as part of the governmental program CONANP-PROCER and the group’s participation in the capacity-building workshop “Conservation Work  and Soul Restoration in Areas Reforested by Defenders of the Environment of Los Tuxtlas”, financed by the CONAFOR. In addition we and the Tribu Wounan, a adventure tourism enterprise where several members of Forest of Interbeing work, regularly take visitors to the community’s protected area and, thereby, generate income for Anolis. In 2016 we obtained 300 tree for reforestation in the community, destined particularly to the restoration of the Scarlet Macaw’s habitat.

5. Support for reforestation on private and community land

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Lili Rosas planting a chagalapoli seedling on a private property in Maxacapan, Catemaco.

We have been assisting punctually in reforestation activities in private and community-owned land, with the facilitation of seedlings, volunteer work and material resources. In these cases, we view our support as kind of an incentive to the owners of the properties to start doing reforestation. The maintenance in the long term, however, depends on the owners. We obtain the seedlings from our own tree nurseries, the municipal tree nurery of San Andrés Tuxtla, donations from private tree nurseries and, in some occasions, we also purchase them from private tree nurseries.

6. Tree nurseries

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Seedlings in our tree nursery in Catemaco.

With the aim of saving money in our reforestation work, and in order to always have a sufficient supply of seedlings, we started to establish our own tree nurseries in the private gardens of the project’s members. In fall of 2015 we were able to plant the first seedlings from our own tree nurseries. We focus in native species, like chagalapoli (Ardisia compressa), guanacaste (Enterolobium cyclocarpum), or chinini (Persea schiedeana). However, in some places we also plant non-native fruit trees, which have a long tradition of being planted in the region and have the advantage that it is more likely people will protect them, due to their economic benefits. Apart from the care for our own tree nurseries, in 2016 we supported economically the community-based tree nursery in the community Tepancan, municipality of San Andrés Tuxtla, in order to purchase material necessary to continue their voluntary work.

7. Protection of sea turtles

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Newborn green sea turtle on its way to the sea,  Punta Puntillas, Ángel R. Cabada (Photo: Elías Quero).

Beside our activities in forest conservation, we decided to support also people communities in the coast of Los Tuxtlas dedicated to the conservation of sea turtles. In the season, people from Punta Puntillas, Los Arrecifes and Zapotitlán check many kilometers of coastline to collect sea turtle eggs in order to protect them from dogs, other animals and illegal use. Finally, when the small sea turtles are ready and hatch, they are released to the sea. We support these communities in the buying of material necessary for their conservation work and in 2015 we organized a sea turtle liberation event in Punta Puntillas which was visited by more the a hundred people. The funds raised in this event were given directly to the local project. We have also cooperated with people from the same communities in the project “Restoration of Coastal Dunes”, financed by the CONANP.

Click here to see more photos from our work with the sea turtle protection projects.

Management of governmental funds

In addition to the activities realized with our own financial resources, we have been involved in the management of the following projects, financed by governmental programs:

  • 2015: as part of the project “Strategic Activities for the Conservation of the Mexican Primates” carried out by the INECOL (Institute of Ecology) and financed by the program PROCER (Conservation Program for Species in Risk) of the CONANP (National Commission for Natural Protected Areas) we managed the handing out of material worth 20,000 Mexican pesos for reforestation in local communities in Catemaco and San Andrés Tuxtla.
  • 2016: we were involved in the management of the project “Restoration of Coastal Dunes”, financed by the program PROCODES (Conservation Program for Sustainable Development) of the CONANP, with a fund of 100,000 Mexican pesos. The project was carried out in the communities Punta Puntilla (municipality Ángel R. Cabada), Los Arrecifes (municipality Mecayapan) and Zapotitlán (municipality Tatahuicapan de Juárez).
  • 2017: we applied for and participated in the workshop “Conservation Work  and Soul Restoration in Areas Reforested by Defenders of the Environment of Los Tuxtlas”, financed by the CONAFOR (National Forestry Commission) with an amount of 60,000 Mexican pesos. This workshop also benefitted our partners involved in conservation in the local communities Benito Juárez (municipality Catemaco) and Chuniapan de Arriba (municipality San Andrés Tuxtla).
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Transport of seedlings by boat for the reforestation of coastal dunes.

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