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PACT Awards 3 New Grants in Capacity Building and Environmental Support

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PACT AWARDS 3 NEW GRANTS IN CAPACITY BUILDING AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUPPORT

May 12, 2017— The Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT) is proud to announce to the public and our stakeholders that 3 new investments have been made for the month of May. PACT has awarded two Professional Development Grants and one Environmental Support Grant for a total value of BZ $24,300.00. The first Professional Development Grant was awarded to the Ya’axché Conservation Trust at BZ $9,550.00 to enable their Science Director and Protected Areas Program Director to participate in the ‘28th International Congress for Conservation Biology’ in Cartagena, Columbia. The second Professional Development Grant was awarded to the Belize Forest Department at BZ $10,000.00 for the participation of one of their Foresters in the ‘2017 International Seminar on Protected Area Management’ to be held in Montana, USA. The third grant issued was an Environmental Support Grant to Caye Caulker’s La Isla Cariñosa Academy (LICA) at a total value of BZ $4,750.00. Funds from this grant will be used to allow for LICA to carry out its “Education Week 2017” around activities that teach students the benefits of conservation and proper waste disposal on the island.

Ya’axché Conservation Trust – $9,550.00
Ya’axché Conservation Trust works with communities in and around Bladen Nature Reserve and Columbia River Forest Reserve to develop capacity and advocate for the safeguarding and sustainable use of land and natural resources. They currently co-manage two protected areas in Southern Belize. Over the past two years, Ya’axché have been using the Spatial Monitoring and Report Tool (SMART) as a part of its wildlife monitoring strategy. By participating in this Congress, it is expected the knowledge acquired and shared over the course of the Congress will allow for improved decision making and innovation in the field of wildlife and biodiversity management.

Belize Forest Department – $10,000.00
The Belize Forest Department was established in 1935 and serves as the regulatory agency responsible for the management of terrestrial protected areas. In some cases, they are aided by NGO co-managing counterparts. By attending this Congress, the Forest Department will be building the capacity of its in-house Forester in proper protected areas management techniques and strategies for long-term sustainable use and enjoyment of protected areas. Main themes to be covered at the seminar include: integrated planning for protected areas; community involvement and transboundary issues in the face of climate change among others.

La Isla Cariñosa Academy (LICA) – $4,750.00
LICA is a private school located in Caye Caulker Village. Through this grant, students will be introduced to themes that contribute to a healthy and clean environment, which benefits the community as well as protected areas. Activities to be carried out under this grant will include site visits to the Caye Caulker Forest Reserve in addition to painting and placement of garbage bins. The latter is an especially significant feature because bins will be placed in the school zone area of Caye Caulker. At present, there are no bins within this school zone. In doing so, students will be actively promoting a clean environment, through proper waste disposal.

PACT takes this opportunity to congratulate all recipients, and to thank them for contributing to greater conservation capacity building and education awareness!

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For more information on Ya’axché, visit: http://www.yaaxche.org/

For more information on the Belize Forest Department, visit: http://www.forestdepartment.gov.bz/
For more information on La Isla Cariñosa Academy, visit: https://www.facebook.com/La-Isla-Carinosa-Academy

PACT was formally established in January 1996 with the passing of the Protected Areas Conservation Trust Act, No. 15 of 1995, creating the institution as a Statutory Board. PACT contributes to the sustainable management and development of Belize’s natural and cultural heritage by providing effective funding support to protected areas. The PACT is managed by a Board of Directors that is comprised of Government agencies, non-government organizations and individual experts.

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