Case Study: CEASPA, Panama

To reduce stresses on ecosystems, some capacity-building programs train people to earn a living in ways that do not exploit ocean or coastal resources. An example is the San Lorenzo project CEASPA (Centro de Estudios y Acción Social Panameño) [the Panamanian Center for Research and Social Action]).

CEASPA is a Panamanian non-governmental organization that works on very small-scale local projects, including that of Achiote, a small rural community that borders a tropical-forest region for which protection is being sought.

Funding for the project—which involved small-scale efforts organized around ecotourism, bird-watching, local empowerment, and development of self-esteem—was only about US$110,000 in 2005-2006, but it depended heavily on volunteers.