COMMUNITIES ARE IMPORTANT
Communities play an important role in the conservation of ecosystems; conservation success depends on their support and participation. Ya’axché’s good rapport with communities keeps us grounded and has allowed for successful collaboration, ensuring the protection of the ecosystems. Our support has translated to empowerment, with communities taking greater leadership in the sustainable use of their forests and rivers that they rely on in the Maya Golden Landscape.
It is important for communities to have access to skills, knowledge and information in order to be effective stewards. Therefore, we implement education and outreach activities in an effort to increase awareness on environmental topics and issues faced by the country. Furthermore, we highlight how they can individually and collectively contribute to solutions and actions.
In addition, we also offer various capacity building opportunities (such as training, workshops and forums) to community leaders and groups, farmers, teachers, and children. We also share disseminate information on our activities (such as research and monitoring) so that communities are aware of the results of our work.
Ya’axché’s approach is inclusive, participatory, engaging and culturally appropriate. We have a dedicated team that engages students (primary, secondary and tertiary) in environmental education, focusing on issues and solutions as well as exposing them to conservation careers. Farming families are provided with technical support, trainings, materials and supplies to support them in the implementation of climate-smart farming. Local leaders and community groups are engaged in trainings, workshops as well as exchange visits to build their capacity in governance, micro-finance and sustainable agriculture.
We are working with 80 farmers, 9 primary schools, and various organized groups in 8 communities throughout the Maya Golden Landscape. Communities are understanding and are engaging in the protection of forests and rivers which provides many benefits to them. Additionally, our agricultural outreach efforts are enabling farmers to adopt climate-smart farming techniques that reduce the demand of cutting down primary forest in search of fertile soils.