WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO
Healthy forest and rivers provide ecosystem services to 19 communities in the Maya Golden Landscape. These services are threatened by climate change, illegal and unsustainable logging, hunting, agriculture and development and will be lost without community stewardship and effectively managed protected areas.
WHERE WE WORK
The 770,000-acre Maya Golden Landscape (MGL) is a patchwork of protected areas, private lands, and Hispanic and Maya communities. The MGL forms the primary southern biological corridor for Belize, which is the only remaining broadleaf forest link between the Maya Mountains and the forested coastal plains of southern Belize. This link is critically important on both a national and regional scale as part of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor.
The MGL is hailed as a site of significant global biodiversity importance. The MGL provides protection to a myriad of rare and endangered species, such as the harpy eagle, Baird’s tapir, and all five wild cat species endemic to the region. This includes the Bladen Nature Reserve – the most biodiverse protected area in Belize; Maya Mountain North Forest Reserve – a key biodiversity area; and, the Golden Stream Corridor Preserve – a critical link in the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor.
The work of Ya’axché plays a vital role in maintaining clean breathing air, medicinal plants, food, and water quality for communities in the Toledo District and for the World Heritage Belize Barrier Reef. Ya’axché will continue to empower and build climate resilient communities, protect wildlife, soils, forests, rivers and reef for a sustainable future in Belize.