A passion for life's diversity
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Nature & Culture International is dedicated to the conservation of biological and cultural diversity. We act locally to protect highly biodiverse and threatened ecosystems through concrete actions with local staff.

Success Stories

The Independent Charities Seal of Excellence is awarded to charities that have, upon rigorous independent review, been able to certify, document, and demonstrate on an annual basis that they meet the highest standards of public accountability, program effectiveness, and cost effectiveness.

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Sustainable Community Development

Improving livelihoods while conserving spectacular ecosystems

A core element of NCI's ethic is to link the well being of local communities with actions that conserve the environment. We aim to provide sustainable incomes for communities, and to develop awareness of the need for sustainable management of natural resources, and away from common practices such as unsustainable or illegal logging.

At La Ceiba, Ecuador, we are working with communities to implement improved grazing management practices that increase income and reduce overstocking of animals. To add further value, we are working with the Brazilian cosmetics firm Natura that pays the community good prices for the sustainable production of the essential oil from the Palo Santo plant, helping to promote the conservation of 7,500 acres of endangered tropical dry forests.

At the newly created Tamshiyacu-Tahuayo reserve in Peru, we helped local artisans form the cooperative Mi Esperanza (My Hope) to market beautiful value-added products such as multi-colored baskets from the local chambira palm. Our work with the communities and in developing sales outlets has resulted in an average doubling of incomes in communities around the reserve.

The rewards of this strategy are apparent when, for instance, community members of the Village of Tahuayo, Peru have twice denounced illegal loggers this year, perceiving this unsustainable extraction to be against the community’s interests in a sustainable lifestyle. In both cases the reserve authorities were able to confiscate the illegal timber with government assistance.

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