What was the defining moment that led you to this innovation?
Between 2006 and 2007, the Fund made the call Action "Sustainable Bio-business" aimed at small business-friendly community environment. The Fund selected 23 micro-enterprises in rural communities and ethnic and gave them non-repayable grants of up to $ 25 billion dollars to finance the purchase and renovation of equipment and access to technical support services on the market, such as organic certification and fair trade, development and adjustment of business plans, advice on systems of quality control and brand health records, advice to develop new products and services, and design.
In this group there were four organizations offering community-based tourism services in the municipality of Nuquí, Chocó Department: Hand Changed, Eco Guides Coqui Joví Community Council and Community Corporation Los springs. The effect of grants given was important not only for the transformation of business but by the consolidation of an alliance aimed at offering a "Nuquí Pacific" as an alternative tourist destination based on local natural and cultural heritage.
In 2008, Mano Changed was selected by the National Parks Unit of the Ministry of Environment to manage ecotourism infrastructure Utría National Park. This decision was part of a set of policy measures (National Policy for Development of Ecotourism Guidelines for service concessions ecotourism Ecotourism Guidelines for Community) aimed at "strengthening ecotourism in the context of sustainable development to protect natural and cultural resources, improve the quality of life of the population and the competitiveness of the sector. "
Changed Hand selection was key to that in May 2009 decided to initiate Action Fund Capacity Building Program that will benefit other hand Changed 5 micro and community enterprises selected to serve community-based ecotourism in 6 National Parks of singular value ecosystem and cultural.
The Action Fund appreciates this public policy that recognizes and appreciates the natural and cultural heritage of the area and encourages the equitable sharing of benefits among communities. Our commitment to these ventures and the consolidation of these ecotourism destinations is total. We know that the challenge involves not only associated with the public sector but private, to give it a character of market and financial sustainability of these initiatives.
Tell us about the social innovator behind this idea.
II was born in Bogotá, Colombia. In 1985 I graduated from the Economics Department at Los Andes University, in Bogotá. As an undergraduate I was hired as research assistant by the University’s Center for Studies in Economic Development and worked in several research projects. After graduation I worked for the National Institute for Natural Resources and the Environment.
In 1987 I received a Fulbright Foundation scholarship and enrolled in the Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research in New York. In 1990 I obtained an MA in Political Economy, with emphasis in Race, Class and Gender. After graduation I worked at the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Center at Hunter College.
Most of my professional life has been dedicated to the public sector. Between 1991 and 1995 I worked at the Colombian National Planning Ministry, where I led the executive unit in charge of implementing the country’s Tropical Forestry Action Plan. One of the main results of the Colombian TFAP was the creation of the Ministry of the Environment with financial support form the World Bank, the Inter American Development Bank and development aid.
In 1995 I was appointed Director of the National Program for Technological Development in Agriculture, implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture with funding from the World Bank. The Program and its competitive grants fund were showcased by the Bank as a best practice for the development, adaptation and transfer of sustainable and adequate technologies for small rural agricultural producers.
In 1998 I received a scholarship from the Chinese government and enrolled in Nanjing University where I studied Mandarin and Chinese culture. Two years later I was designated First Secretary in charge of Economic Affairs and International Cooperation at the Colombian Embassy in Belgium and the European Union. I lived in Brussels for two years and returned to head the Rural Sustainable Development Unit at the Colombian National Planning Ministry.
In mid-2004 I was chosen by Spencer Stuart, a global executive search firm to be the Executive Director of the Fund for Environment and Childhood (Fondo para la Acción Ambiental y la Niñez).
I am President-elect of the Latin American and Caribbean Network of Environmental Funds – REDLAC, an association of over 20 private and public members.
How did you first hear about Changemakers?
Web Search (e.g., Google or Yahoo)
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