Las Cañadas -- Inspirational and Practical : A Model for Hope
Las Cañadas is a 306 hectares ecological land trust which is home to one of the few remaining cloud forests in the central zone of Veracruz, Mexico. It has been designed with the aim of modeling and sharing alternative methods of food production, responsible travel, and sustainable living practices. Originally a cattle farm, the owners saw the impact of intensive cattle grazing: severe soil erosion, In 1995 they sold all of the cattle and reforested 60 hectares with 50,000 native trees (maples, oaks, walnuts, and sycamores). In the remaining pastures they let nature take its course. A unique feature of their land is a a swath of approximately 40 hectares of virgin cloud forest. Today they are organized as a cooperative and provide training, and hands-on learning in the areas of agro-ecology, forest restoration, sustainable dairy practices and alternative technologies. For more information go to: www.bosquedeniebla.com.mx
SOSTENICA´s collaborative work integrates environmental and educational projects with financial services, creating a holistic and long-term approach to the alleviation of poverty in Nicaragua. Our loan programs are designed to strengthen Nicaraguan communities. We attempt to ensure that Nicaraguan culture and way of life have a sustainable future despite the homogenizing pressures of the integrated global economy. SOSTENICA offers socially conscious investors in the US an opportunity to use their financial resources constructively, to preserve their capital within the parameters of the risks identified in our prospectus, and to earn interest — while at the same time having a positive impact on a struggling developing country’s economy. SOSTENICA affords the productive poor of Nicaragua — small farmers and micro-enterprises — access to credit that would be otherwise unavailable. The combination of thoughtful First World investment and careful socially conscious lending to the poorest creditworthy borrowers of Nicaragua creates an opportunity for sustainable growth.
SOSTENICA's investors and donors provide funds that allow their partner organization, CEPRODEL (Centro de Promoción del Desarrollo Local), to offer credit and technical assistance to small business owners and farmers throughout the Northwest region of Nicaragua. SOSTENICA is committed to sustainability. They collaborative with Las Cañadas and CEPRODEL to promote cutting edge training and exchanges among Mexican, U.S. and Nicaraguan professionals. They believe that environmental and educational projects combined with financial services, create a more holistic and long-term approach to the alleviation of poverty. For more information visit: http://www.sostenica.org/
Quaker Leadership Program
The Quaker Leadership Program at Westtown school in Pennsylvania hosts a summer environmental leadership workcamp. This workcamp is an experiential, bio-regionally based educational program focsuing on watershed conservation, sustainable development, and cultural exchange at Las Cañadas. For information about this program, lease visit: http://www.westtown.edu/our_program/summer_workcamps.aspx
The Micro-watershed Association
In 2007, a group of committed local individuals founded the non-governmental organization known as “Microcuenca del Citlalapa A.C." (The Citlalapa Micro-Watershed Association or CMWA). Their objective is to develop projects that will lead to the restoration and conservation of the natural resources in the local watershed as part of a larger approach to strengthening rural development. The CMWA facilitates and coordinates communication and collaboration among local stakeholders including, local and national NGOs, local government offices and community associations. They seek to conserve and restore their natural resources through raising awareness, environmental education and concrete projects at the community level. http://www.microcuenca.com.mx/