Previous Next

Colombia strengthens Afro-Colombian communities against climate change with forestry actions

Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Honduras, Guatemala, Colombia and El Salvador join forces to promote forest value chains and improve the resilience of local communities.

Bogotá, August 12, 2019. Strategic forest actions, productive empowerment and knowledge management of local Afro-Colombian communities are the basis for ensuring sustainable community management of forests and the wellbeing of the communities that inhabit them.

The project “Communities, Forests and Biodiversity: Promoting dialogue, exchange and forest value chains for climate change adaptation and mitigation” aims to strengthen integrated forest management models from the viewpoint of Community Based Organisations (CBOs) and Indigenous Peoples' Organisations (IPOs) with a territorial management approach as a mechanism for adapting to and mitigating climate change in 4 Latin American countries, including Honduras, Guatemala, Colombia and El Salvador, which were recently included to enrich the project's area of influence.

This is one of the nine projects of the Forests, Biodiversity and Ecosystems (FBE) component of the European Union-funded EUROCLIMA+ programme, whose proposal was developed jointly with ICCO Cooperation, the Association of Forest Communities of Petén (ACOFOP) in Guatemala, the Federation of Agroforestry Producers of Honduras (FEPROAH), Moskitia Asla Takanka (MASTA) and the Greater Community Council of the Farmer’s Organisation of Alto Atrato (COCOMOPOCA) in Colombia.

Delegates of COCOMOPOCA and the heads of the implementing agencies of the FBE component, Expertise France and GIZ, as well as the European Union Delegation in Colombia, the French Development Agency (AFD), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development in Colombia (MADS) and ICCO cooperation met on August 12 at the Palacio de San Carlos, in order to formally present the project to the Colombian partners, identify synergies with other ongoing projects, and encourage a work dynamic.

Francisco Mosquera, delegate of the COCOMOPOCA board, the community council that is the implementing partner of the project in Colombia, highlighted the importance of this project for learning and having new ideas to manage our community territory and its forests well.

Andrés Marmolejo of the MADS International Affairs Office and Colombia Focal Point for EUROCLIMA+, expressed the great relevance of the activities being carried out in Colombia’s Atrato area, which is considered one of the country’s most important and vulnerable natural areas. He also highlighted that the project activities will generate concrete results and lessons learned for the strategic areas of Forest Economy and Bioeconomics of the current National Development Plan.

For her part, Natalia González, coordinator in Colombia of the ICCO Cooperation programme Our Land, Our Forestsad, highlighted that one of the main activities of the Euroclima+ project in Colombia is to work directly with 22 of the 43 local community councils that comprise COCOMOPOCA in order to define forest conservation areas in a participatory manner, in order to lay the groundwork to continue making progress on COCOMOPOCA's REDD+ Project, as a tool to enable Sustainable Community Forest Management of the largest forest areas within this collective territory.

The project will increase collaborative actions, regional cooperation and policy dialogue between IPOs/CBOs and state authorities to share lessons learned and multi-level governance systems that may have been effective in halting deforestation, forest degradation and biodiversity loss. To learn more about the project, click here.

About implementing partners

ICCO Cooperation, the main applicant for the project, is a Dutch international development cooperation organisation with more than 50 years of experience and global presence. It contributes to the reduction of poverty and inequality, ensuring sustainable livelihoods, justice, dignity and security. Its funds come from the Dutch government, European governments, multilateral sources, the private sector and Dutch churches.

ACOFOP (Guatemala), a co-applicant, is an association that brings together communities in the buffer zone of the Maya Biosphere Reserve to manage forest concessions that collectively represent the world's largest area of certified forest under community management.

FEPROAH (Honduras), a co-applicant, was created in 2000 for the purpose of developing advocacy actions to ensure that organisations and their affiliates, men and women, carry out their productive activities in a transparent setting, at the local, regional and national levels where they find the least difficulty in benefitting families and communities.

MASTA (Honduras), a co-applicant of the proposal, began in 1976 in the community of Awas, territorial council BAMIASTA. Its purpose is to strengthen the autonomy and indigenous governance of the Moskitia territory, revitalising its culture and ensuring the legalisation, administration and collective control of its lands, territories and natural resources. MASTA is located throughout the Moskitia Department and it develops initiatives such as: Indigenous Law, Defence of the Territory and Natural Resources, Climate Change, Indigenous Autonomy, and Bilingual Education.

COCOMOPOCA (Colombia) is an organisation that brings together all the members of the communities of the region, whose basic needs are unsatisfied and who wish to build a better future. Its members are farmer beneficiaries of the territory. The action framework and work area of this Community Council are rural areas in the municipalities of Atrato, Bagadó, Lloró and Certegui where there are communities affiliated with this organisation.


EUROCLIMA+ is a programme funded by the European Union to promote environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient development in 18 Latin American countries, particularly for the benefit of the most vulnerable populations. The Programme is implemented under the synergistic work of seven agencies: Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), French Development Agency (AFD), Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Expertise France (EF), International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), and UN Environment.

Press contacts

For information about EUROCLIMA+, contact Alexandra Cortés: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  

For more press information, contact Marvin Centeno Solórzano: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For information about the EUROCLIMA+ Forests, Biodiversity and Ecosystems component, write to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..