Foundation for Ecodevelopment and Conservation (FUNDAECO)

Bolitoglossa jacksoni by Carlos Vasquez Almazan

The Foundation for Eco-Development and Conservation (FUNDAECO) is one of the main conservation organisations in Guatemala, working to conserve biodiversity and promote sustainable community development through the participatory establishment and management of Protected Areas.

In a context of high vulnerability to climate change, they aim to protect natural ecosystems and their environmental services, and to promote sustainable livelihoods for poor and vulnerable communities in regions of high biodiversity.

FUNDAECO promotes the establishment of protected areas and their participatory governance; supports ownership rights to land and natural resources for local communities, fosters sustainable economic activities for communities (ecotourism, non-timber forest products, handicrafts, agroforestry), and promotes the protection of biodiversity through research, monitoring, education, and advocacy.

Over the years, FUNDAECO has supported the establishment and management of 27 protected areas in Guatemala; partnered with over 100 communities in sustainable development projects, carried out the longest bird banding and monitoring project in Latin America; and pioneered projects on Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) mechanisms, Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) sites, Conservation Easements and Forest Protection Incentives.

At A Glance