Responsible tourism is our most important commitment. All of the holidays that we organise are guided by its central principles – that our visit can and should benefit the local community, that we should leave places as we discovered them and that our visit is so much more than a holiday; it is a chance to learn more about the ecosystems we visit and their conservation value. Throughout our tours we encourage a greater environmental awareness, whether of the landscape itself or its inhabitants.
We always travel in small groups both in Galapagos and Ecuador to minimise our impact on the environment.
Supporting local organisations
For each guest that travels with us we will make a contribution on your behalf to one of our chosen charities or conservation projects. When you fill in your booking form, you will be asked to tick the box of the one you would like to support:
- 1 year complementary membership to the Galapagos Conservation Trust (this will be the default option if for any reason you don’t want to choose)
- Make a £10 Donation to the San Pablo Orphanage for children with HIV
- Sponsor the permanent protection of 1/5th of an acre of Ecuadorian Rainforest with Rainforest Concern
Galapagos Conservation Trust
The Galapagos Conservation Trust was set up to raise funds for, and awareness of the conservation needs of the Galapagos Islands. Based in the UK, they work with key institutions in the Galapagos to conserve the ecosystems and biological diversity of the archipelago.
Your year’s membership will help support vital conservation projects in the Galapagos and you will receive a subscription to their bi-annual magazine and email newsletters as well as invites to various events held during the year. Read more about the GCT and its work here. http://www.savegalapagos.org
San Pablo Orphanage
The San Pablo Orphanage in Ecuador was set up by Father Alfonso Castells to look after HIV positive orphans. Being HIV positive in Ecuador is extremely difficult as there is a huge amount of ignorance and fear associated with the disease. Children are often abandoned to orphanages when they are discovered to be HIV.
The father does what he can on limited resources and help from villagers but the orphanage is in urgent need of funds to pay the salary of someone to care for the babies and toddlers up to 4 years old. Up until recently, they have had no-one to care directly for them. Your donation will go directly to the orphanage to pay for their care. Read more about Father Alfonso.
Read more about the orphanage via our friend Christiana Ring who provides therapeutic help to many of the children. If you would like to make further donations, there are many other activities in the orphanage that you can fund such as sponsoring a child or sponsoring vital therapy sessions that Christina provides.
Rainforest Concern is a UK based charity set up to protect the endangered habitats of the South American rainforest, including their immense biodiversity and the indigenous people who depend on them for their survival.
Rainforest concern take direct action to protect vital corridors of rainforest such as purchasing land in the name of local NGOs or communities. Your contribution will protect a 1/5 acre of Ecuadorian rainforest – about 800m2, the size of a suburban garden.
Our achievements so far
Think Galapagos and our guests have been instrumental in the successful establishment of the Pan y Miel Foundation in Quito.
The Foundation is run by Rosario Luna and aims to provide schooling and basic care for children in a shanty town in the capital.
Due to a combination of poverty and family situations, many of the children would not be able to go to school without the support of Pan y Miel.
Thanks to the support of people like us, the Foundation has now reached the point where it can access larger corporate sponsors in Ecuador.
Carbon offsetting with Rainforest Concern
In a bid to reduce the impact of our travel on the environment, we recommend that all of our guests offset their estimated carbon emissions through Rainforest Concern.
Rainforest Concern has set up a programme called Forest Credits to run and manage their carbon offset projects. These projects use funds from carbon offsetting to protect threatened tracts of forest from destruction, helping protect the biodiversity of the area and creating a lasting environmental legacy.
The first of these dedicated carbon forestry projects is in the Neblina Reserve in North West Ecuador. This area of cloud forest is located in an area under threat of deforestation from agriculture and large-scale extractive industries. The cloud forest project is part of a larger plan, the Choco-Andean Corridor Project to create corridor of protected forest in one of the most bio-diverse regions in the world. Forest Credits are currently looking at developing two further offset projects in Chile.
Telephone 01482 872 716 for more information or email us today.