Building Community Environmental Stewardship in the Maya Forest Corridor through Avian Ecology
Building Community Environmental Stewardship in the Maya Forest Corridor through Avian Ecology
This project will serve as a supporting project toward the larger objectives of the coalition to influence livelihood practices to become more biodiversity-positive among the agriculture, tourism, forestry, and wildlife sectors. The ongoing feasibility studies by the coalition will occur in tandem with this smaller community-focused project, which will address community attitudes and capacity, while the feasibility studies inform the factors that affect the livelihood sectors.
The project will equip community members and youth with basic avian identification skills that will initiate community natural resource monitoring, through data submission on the global avian citizen-science platform eBird. This will be a long-term, sustainable contribution to monitoring of avian species in the corridor that can continue informally, but still provide valuable data to inform management of the corridor and its natural resources. By increasing the community ecological knowledge, locals will understand the benefits of conservation and become more engaged in protecting the wild areas around them, in addition to learning sustainable ways to continue their traditional interactions with these resources.
The project aims to achieve the following objectives:
• Engagement of four local communities and three civil society organizations in the management of the MFC
• Capacity development of stakeholders in avian monitoring techniques and corridor ecology
• Increased education and skills in four target communities to develop more sustainable livelihood practices in tourism, agriculture, forest, and wildlife use.
• Establishment of long-term partnerships between local Civil Society Organizations and local communities.
• Sustainability in generational knowledge sharing through training of teachers.
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Project Snapshot

University of Belize Environmental Research Institute
Area Of Work:
Grant Amount:
US$ 50,000.00
Co-Financing Cash:
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 49,113.00
Project Number:
Currently under execution
Project Characteristics and Results
Promoting Public Awareness of Global Environment
Community Birding: Based on a suggestion given during the Planning Grant Community Consultations, a booklet with submissions from children about their birding experiences would be compiled to distribute to the communities. This will allow community members to see the direct impact that the project has made on the youth and will empower the children by allowing them to voice their own experiences within the corridor. Community Capacity Development: The community will develop their own sustainability goals which will be developed into a brochure to share with the MFC Coalition leading the efforts to secure the corridor lands. This will ensure community ownership and influence in the decision-making process of corridor endeavors. The goals set by the stakeholder communities will ensure an active contribution to the management plan developed for the MFC and will be an official document for governance under the National Protected Areas System.
Gender Focus
In order to ensure the engagement of all genders in this project, active recruitment to all members of the household will be done for community birding clubs as well as capacity building sessions. If the response is not favourable among a certain gender cohort, the project manager will develop ways to accommodate a more inviting environment for participation to promote a safe space with representation of every cohort.
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SGP Country office contact

Mr. Leonel Requena
(501) 822-2462


UNDP Belize,3rd Floor, Lawrence Nicholas Building Complex ,P.O. Box 53,South Ring Road,
Belmopan, Central America