Guatemala has the second highest biodiversity in Central America (after Costa Rica). The country is home to 1,246 known species of animals and 8,681 species of plants, of which 13.5 percent are not found anywhere else in the world.
Most forest loss in Guatemala has resulted from agriculture and fuelwood collection. Population pressures around protected areas have resulted in illegal timber harvesting and land clearing for agriculture, even inside national parks.
Creating a sustainable model for communities to harness their natural resources is essential to improving Guatemala’s forests and the country's social wellbeing. Our partner has spent many years working with indigenous communities to build their trust. Almost 700 hectares of biodiverse land around Laguna Brava has been protected with the help of such local communities. Empowering people to look after their own land in an economically and environmentally sustainable way is key to this project.