On May 1st, 2013, the Bolivian government announced its expulsion of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) a major funder of ACA's projects in Bolivia. Effective immediately, funding for all USAID projects in Bolivia must cease. This sudden change jeopardizes our ongoing conservation work with the Tacana indigenous communities north of Madidi National Park who are stewards to more than 840,000 acres of Amazonian forest.
We are asking for your support to continue this valuable project. All donations towards the Bolivia project will be matched dollar-for-dollar by a generous donor! Please note that ACA has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, the leading charity evaluator in America.
Traditional livelihoods conserving Bolivia's forests
Edgar Garcia is president of the organization of Tacana indigenous people of the Madre de Dios River, a Brazil nut harvester and a defender of Bolivia’s Amazon. His community depends on the harvest of wild Brazil nuts on their ancestral territory of more than 840,000 acres.
This forest also provides families’ everyday needs. ACA’s research has found that families rely on natural resources within their territory for more than 70% of daily food, medicine, and shelter.
Recently Edgar told us, “…after working together with ACA over a number of years, we believe that we can improve the management and conservation of our forests, and we have faith that ACA will [continue to] help us in this…”
Since 2006, the Amazon Conservation Association (ACA) and the Tacana indigenous people of the Madre de Dios River have partnered to manage and protect the community’s territory deep in the Bolivian Amazon, build community capacity, bring Brazil nuts to market, and strengthen indigenous organizations. Forests in the region are increasingly under threat from migration, expansion of unsustainable agriculture, and development of road projects.
New, urgent need with sudden departure of USAID
The Tacana communities of the Madre de Dios River and their leadership through the indigenous organization have asked for our continued support and even developed ideas to expand our program. With the loss of USAID funding, our great progress and the program’s future is threatened. We need your help to ensure our work with the Tacana can continue.
A global center for biodiversity
The lands the Tacana call home are adjacent to Madidi National Park and the Manuripi Reserve, two premiere parks in Bolivia’s Amazon. Together, this complex of parkland and indigenous community lands make up a vast extension of Amazonian rainforest and the Pampas del Heath, one of the great remaining Amazonian savannas.
ACA’s field research has found that the savannas support unique communities of flora and fauna and provide shelter to rare mammals, including the maned wolf and marsh deer. Rich forests house fauna like jaguars, the Madidi titi monkey, and several rare macaw species.
YOU can help support conservation in Bolivia’s richest forests
We needed to raise $86,000 to carry out the work already planned with the Tacana through the end of 2013. Thankfully, based on donations from many supporters, including a generous ACA board member and the International Conservation Fund of Canada, we have reached our goal for 2013 as of July 15. Please consider donating to support the continuation of this important program in 2014!
Donations can also be sent by mail to Amazon Conservation Association, 1822 R St NW, Washington DC 20009. THANK YOU!
Use this link to donate or mail a check to ACA, 1822 R St NW, Washington, DC 20009. Other ways to donate here.
Tacana villagers from Toromonas and three other communities have been working with ACA since 2006.
ACA staff training the Tacana in forest monitoring.
Edgar Garcia, President of CITRMD, the Tacana indigenous organization.
Maned wolf. Photo: Louise Emmons
Blue-and-yellow macaw (Ara ararauna). Photo: J. Bise
A young woman records her family's hunting as part of the self-monitoring program.
Johnny Ayala, staff zoologist and Brazil nut coordinator, during a visit to a Tacana community. Photo: Steven Panfil
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