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Friends for Conservation and Development sign declaration of good intent with Guatemalan Environmental organizations

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Posted: Thursday, February 28, 2019. 4:10 pm CST.

Posted: Thursday, February 28, 2019. 4:00 p.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: Today, Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD) signed a Declaration of Good intent to promote the protection, conservation, and restoration of natural eco systems, cultural heritage and sustainable development of natural areas connecting the territories of Belize and Guatemala. 

The objective of the declaration is to strengthen coordination, partnerships and strategic collaboration between stakeholders and sectors to promote the protection and conservation of cultural heritage and sustainable development of natural areas through local and indigenous community participation empowerment and stewardship. 

FCD and 6 other Belizean organizations signed the declaration including Wildlife Conservation Society, Toledo Alcalde Association/ Maya Leaders Alliance, Toledo Institute for Development and Environment, Program for Belize, Chiquibul/Mopan/ Macal watershed alliance, Empowered network. 

Asociacion Balam from Guatemala along with 11 other organizations for the conservation of natural resources and cultural heritage signed the declaration. The Director of Asociacion Balam, Byron Castellanos in his presentation emphasized the need for Governmental support to protect and conserve natural heritage in both countries. Castellanos also explained the importance of collaborations with the 2 countries. 

” We need the Government of Belize and the Government of Guatemala to support us in these projects,” Castellanos said. 

Executive Director of FCD, Raphael Manzanero, in his address, shared a joint plan for collaborative activities for the prevention of forest fires, reduction of wildlife trafficking, combat artifact trafficking, and to promote cultural heritage and quality of life for local communities. 

Manzanero also explained that the declaration provides a reaffirmation of the commitment of civil society organizations from both countries to continue to work collaboratively to promote protection and collaboration of natural resources.

” The declaration we signed is to reassure the commitment that exists for the protection of our resources. The declaration was reviewed by the indigenous community and welcomed to continue to strengthen collaborations,” Manzanero said.

Manzanero thanked all the Non Governmental Organizations for their continued partnerships to promote protection and conservation of natural eco systems.

The associations made a commitment to translate the Declaration to Mopan and Kechi Maya for the indigenous communities. 

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