On June 18, 2021, the Belize Forest Department, under the Ministry of Sustainable Development, Climate Change, and Disaster Risk Management, donated BZ$65,000 worth of equipment, transportation and uniforms to the Itzama Society.
The donation of office and field equipment included a desktop computer, surge protector back-up, smartphones, chainsaws, GPS and two ATVs among other items.
The Itzama Society manages the Elijio Panti National Park located in San Antonio Village, Cayo District. The park is one of the priority areas under the project, Selva Maya Natural Resource Protection, which seeks to maintain the ecosystem functions and cultural values of the Selva Maya that promote the welfare of its people and offer environmental services of global importance. The Selva Maya area covers approximately 42,300 km² between Belize, Guatemala and Mexico. It has the largest extension of tropical forests in Mesoamerica.
Other core components of this project include the development and execution of an effective management plan, the prevention of deforestation and maintenance of the ecosystem’s health, establishment of actions that promote forest landscape restoration and agroforestry systems and the strengthening of the coordination capacity between Belize, Guatemala and Mexico for conservation and sustainable management of the Selva Maya.
The Elijio Panti National Park donation is one in a series coordinated by the Belize Forest Department. The department also donated equipment, supplies and uniforms to the management of other key protected areas, namely the Sarstoon Temash National Park and the Rio Bravo Conservation and Management Area. The department also provided financial assistance to the Chiquibul National Park for the updating of their management plan.
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