Maleku Reserve, Costa Rica
In Costa Rica the Maleku tribe work with LRFF to recuperate and reforest their lands. They created the Tribal Council but need a meeting place. The men build the traditional rancho with little funding.
$1,760.00 (see Appendix 1)
|$35 – buys all of the nails and vines for the rancho|
|$90 – pays for the transportation of all materials|
|$160 – meals for the 4 workers the 8 days needed to construct the rancho|
|$171 – supplies all lumber (300 mts.) for the rancho|
|$832 - pays wages for cutting and weaving of the “suito” leaves|
Project Need and Beneficiaries:
The Maleku inhabit 600 hectares (approx. 1500 acres). In 1976 the Costa Rican government returned almost 3000 hectares to the Maleku. Before the law came into effect 33 years ago these lands had passed into the hands of non-indigenous farmers who deforested it for cattle farming. LRFF and the Maleku are reforesting the land they live on and we’re buying back the rest to be reforested as acquired. The Tribal Council, who will govern the new communal lands, needs a meeting place. Presently we are borrowing venues costing us precious time.
How will the project solve the problem?
The new rancho will give us headquarters for our work, to plan our projects and will be used for ceremonies. It is a sustainable structure made from natural forest materials and will provide employment for local young men to construct and maintain it.
Potential Long-Term Impact:
The traditional space provides the 12-member council a boardroom to plan land acquisitions, reforestation, community development, consider proposals from the residents and hold traditional ceremonies.
“Across the road you see cattle. We Maleku don’t have interest in cattle. All of our resources come from the forests. In 1958, when I was 10 years old, all around us was pure lush, green forest. – Bienvenido Cruz Castro, Vice President, Maleku Tribal Council
Roberta Ward Smiley
President and Founder of LRFF
As project leader Roberta oversees all phases of LRFF’s forestry projects. She is administrtor for the projects, paying participants and performing inspections. She founded LRFF in 2005. Everything she knows about the importance of tropical forests she has learned first hand in the forests of the world’s tropic with 25 years experience in native forest restoration and preservation
Coordinator of the Local Council of Biological Corridors Lake Arenal-Volcano Tenorio
Consultant and liaison for Maleku Tribal Council
Liaison for LRFF United States
Daniel Spreen Wilson
Project manager and LRFF Treasurer
Daniel has 25 years experience in native, tropical forest restoration and preservation. He manages the seedling nursery at La Reserva, identifying Mother trees for seed collection, identification of tree species and ensures that the nursery contains a wide variety of tree species (70+ native species). Daniel is in charge of the work crews who do the hole digging, planting and tree maintenance.
Portland State University – Accounting major
Active member of the Local Council for Biological Corridors Lake Arenal-Volcano Tenorio
Bienvenido Cruz Castro
Construction contractor and manager
Bienvenido is the unofficial chief of the Tonjibe clan. He is a strong, silent and patient leader. He is also the vice-president of the new Tribal Council. He has constructed many ranchos throughout his life, is a traditional master of hunting and fishing, is fluent in his native Maleku language and Spanish. He knows the complete history of his people.
Vice-president Maleku Tribal Council
National leader in Costa Rica for the rights of indigenous peoples
LET’S GET PLANTING
To contribute to this project you may make a tax-deductible donation online at the following link:
U.S. tax deductible nonprofit number EIN# 26-3595528
Or you may contact us at either of the following addresses or telephone numbers:
La Reserva Forest Foundation
117 E Winston St. #302
Los Angeles CA 90013
La Reserva Forest Foundation
Costa Rica, Central America
Telephone: (011) 506-8856-2977