The Monteverde Conservation League (MCL) is a non-profit civil organization, declared a Public Utility institution for the interests of the State by the decree 33632-J. Our mission is “to conserve, preserve, and rehabilitate tropical ecosystems and their biodiversity”. The organization was founded in 1986 by a group of local Monteverde residents concerned for the preservation of local natural resources.
The MCL is composed of 60 active members who attend a yearly meeting to hold elections for the organization’s board of directors. The composition of the active members of the organization in terms of their nationalities, backgrounds, and philosophical principles are diverse, but in the end have a common goal to conserve the forest.
Since its beginnings, the primary project of the MCL has been the acquisition of land in order to conserve it. With the support from hundreds of people from over 44 different countries, the Children’s Eternal Rainforest (Bosque Eterno de los Niños, or BEN) was created. The reserve boasts over 22,500 hectares, and is the largest private reserve in Costa Rica.
The BEN borders Arenal National Park, the higher elevations of Monteverde and Miramar, stretches to the Alberto Manuel Brenes Reserve in San Ramón, and continues through the San Carlos zone near the populations of San Jorge, La Tigra, San Isidro de Peñas Blancas, Chachagua, and El Castillo.
On an administrative level, the MCL has three areas of priority: Protection and Monitoring, Environment and Human Development, and Investigation and Applied Technology.
We believe that human beings are an important component in the ecosystems in which they live because they depend directly upon the soils, air, flora, and fauna around them. At the same time, the stability of ecosystems depends greatly upon how humans interact with them and their components. We are aware that beyond the limits of the BEN there are other processes that can affect the conservation efforts of the MCL; much of our success depends upon the activities of the communities around the BEN. Based upon these principles, the MCL has developed a series of programs and an administrative structure that are described in the following links:
The Network was established as an initiative to create a united non-profit association, composed of an important number of private nature reserves. Together, the Network protects an area of at least 100,000 hectares of land, the majority of which is primary forest.
Some of the objectives of the Network are:
To represent and defend the interests of the owners of the involved Private Nature Reserves on a combined and individual level against the government, international entities, non-governmental organizations, and private entities.
To effectively collaborate with private, public, national, and international groups and institutions that work for conservation of ecosystems and well-being of rural communitie.
Support for the Improvement of the Quality of Life, Defensoría de los Habitantes de la República.
On the 31st of October, 2000, the Office of the Defense of the Habitants of Costa Rica recognized the MCL as an organization that contributes to the improvement of the quality of life and to the habitants of Costa Rica. They specifically acknowledged the MCL’s efforts in education, conservation, research, and the sustainable use of natural resources through agro forestry practices, as well as for the protection and management of the Río Guacimal Watershed.
Authorized to receive income tax-deductible donations.
According to the official document ATP-06-353-2006, dated the 18th of July 2006, the Administración Tributaria announced that in agreement with subsection q) of article 8 of the Income Tax Law number 7092 of the 21 of April 1988 and its reforms the Monteverde Conservation Association is authorized to receive tax deductable donations. The donations can be given in the form of currency, goods, or services.
Declared a Public Utility Institution
According to El Diario Oficial La Gaceta dated the 19 of March 2007, decree No. 33632-J, the MCL is declared a Public Utility Institution in the Interest of the State.
Award for Excellence in Conservation of Costa Rican Biodiversity
On the 22 of May 2008, the Costa Rican Biodiversity Institute (INBio) honored the MCL with an award for Excellence in the Conservation of Biodiversity for being a model and innovator for the conservation and valuation of tropical biodiversity. Along the same lines, the Monteverde Corporation bestowed a certificate upon the MCL for being a role model for Monteverde and the rest of the world to follow.
Part of of the Reserva de la Biósfera Agua y Paz, UNESCO
A delegation of the MCL participated in an event on the 15 of September through the 02 of October 2007 as part of the celebration of the Twentieth Anniversary of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest (BEN) with the goal to promote the campaign to declare the BEN as a sitio Patrimonio Mundial de La Humanidad o Reserva de la Biósfera Agua y Paz under UNESCO to European governmental groups and other organizations.
A dream was born in Switzerland…to have a forest dedicated to children…and it was in Switzerland where the delegation included the BEN as part of the new Reserva de La Biósfera Agua y Paz on the 19th of September, 2007.
The accession of the Monteverde Conservation League as a member of the World Conservation Union (IUCN)
The IUCN Council at its 68th meeting held in South Africa from 19 to 20 November 2007 approved the accession of the Monteverde Conservation League as a member of the Union in Category B (c) - national NGOs. The World Conservation Union is the world’s largest and most important conservation network. The Union brings together 83 States, 110 government agencies, more than 800 non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and some 10,000 scientists and experts from 181 countries in a unique worldwide partnership. Members are able to develop relationships by being part of an alliance of governments and NGOs. Members also have the possibility to expand their networks through international contacts with the Union's staff, experts and other IUCN members.
Education and Conservation Efforts
The organization Ecobike of Monteverde presented an award to the MCL for its outstanding work with environmental education and conservation of the environment on the 06 of June 2008.
Participant in the Costa Rican Pavilion in the ExpoAgua, Zaragoza, Spain
The representative for the ExpoAgua in Costa Rica requested that the MCL and the Children’s Eternal Rainforest participate in the ExpoAgua and Sustainable Development in Zaragoza, Spain, 2008. Representatives from the MCL participated in the Expo from the 14 of June until the 02 of July, 2008 in the Costa Rica Pavilion, located in the Latina America building. Representatives focused on defining the mission of the MCL, the Children’s Eternal Rainforest, and the biological corridors in Costa Rica. They also worked to promote the importance of the relationship between natural reserves in Costa Rica and their contribution to the mitigation of climate change. Additionally, representatives accepted donations for the MCL’s land purchase and conservation campaign.
The Board of Directors is the entity that manages the association. The board supervises the direction and administration of the association, as well as defines its responsibilities. It directs the programs destined to achieve our mission to preserve, conserve, and rehabilitate tropical ecosystems and their biodiversity.
The objectives of the association are: I) the conservation, defense, and recuperation of the country’s natural resources, including its soil, water, air, flora, and fauna, II) the decontamination and protection of the physical, biotic, and cultural environment, III) and the search for the adequate equilibrium and healthy coexistence between human beings and nature.
It is the interest of this association to offer future generations an improved natural heritage and a framework that minimizes contamination.
The Board of Directors is elected by the Members of the General Assembly who meet once every year. All are honorary members and the list of the Board of Directors is as follows:
Board of Directors
Mark Wainwright, President
Julia Matamoros, Vice-president
Sofía Arce, Secretary
Bob Law, Treasurer
Jorge Maroto, Vocal I
Eladio Cruz, Vocal II
Robert Rojas, Vocal III
Marcos A. Méndez, First Fiscal
Yimer Morales, Second Fiscal
Lic. Ismael Calvo, External Auditor
Lic. Víctor González, Surveyer
Lic. Ricaute Jiménez, Legal and Judicial (Ad Honorem)
Licda. Maylin Quirós, Legal and Judicial
Lic. Marco V. Retana, Judicial
Marianela Muñoz, Accounting Assistant.
Rosibel Fallas, Servicios Miscelaneous Services.
María Luisa Retana, Miscelaneous Services..
Giselle Rodríguez, Executive Secretary.
Luz Mery Vásquez, Administrative Assistant Atlantic Area.
Program and Department Coordinators
Walter Bonilla, Accounting and Finance Coordinator.
Hernán Chacón, Protection and Monitoring Program Coordinator.
Luis A. Solano, Maintenance and Operations Coordinator.
Giselle Rodríguez, Human Resources Coordinator and Community Affairs Committee
Yúber Rodríguez, Forestry and Environmental Payment Service Program Coordinator.
Marianella Muñoz, Sales Program Coordinator.
Carolina Brizuela, Environmental Educator Atlantic Area.
Ecoturism and Areas
Ivannia Arguedas, Bajo del Tigre Visitor Center.
Leslie Corrales, Information Center.
José Soto, Bajo del Tigre Reception.
Marcelino Rodríguez, Finca Steller Visitor Center.
L. Geovanny González, San Gerardo Field Station.
Ivannia Moreno, San Gerardo Cook.
Alexander Herrera, Pocosol Field Station.
Roberto Sánchez, Pocosol Field Station.
Maintenance and Operations Program
Erick A. Barquero
Jorge Luis Ramírez
Protection and Monitoring Program
Javier M. Fernández
Arturo A. Sánchez
LIST OF MEMBERS 2008 BY DATE OF AFFILIATION
Marco V. Retana
|Wilford Guindon Hall||08/02/1986*
|William A. Haber||08/02/1986*
|Richard LaVal Bugg||08/02/1986*
|Bob Walter Law Britton||08/02/1986*
|Joseph David Stuckey||08/02/1986*
|Guillermo Vargas Leitón||08/02/1986*
|James Wolfe Ashley||08/02/1986*
|Francis John Joyce||24/01/1989|
|John Thomas Longino||24/01/1989|
|Nalini Moreshwar Nadkarni||24/01/1989|
|Susie Newswanger Kilmer||24/01/1989|
|Katherine C. VanDusen||24/01/1989|
|José Luis Vargas Leitón||24/01/1989|
|Willow Zuchowski Pushkin||24/01/1989|
|Bruce Erick Young||21/02/1989|
|Suzanne Leseur Trostle||01/02/1990|
|Marvin Hidalgo Montero||16/02/1990|
|Alexander Alvarado Méndez||23/03/1990|
|Carmen María Rojas González||08/10/1990|
|María del Carmen Campos Araya||24/05/1991|
|Gerardo Céspedes Rodríguez||24/05/1991|
|Jorge Maroto Puga||04/11/1992|
|Juan Carlos Corrales Arce||18/08/1993|
|Martha Iris Salazar Méndez||20/07/1994|
|Julia Matamoros Alvarado||20/07/1994|
|Oscar Mario Vargas Solís||23/06/1995|
|Carlos Luis Muñoz Brenes||19/12/2000|
|Freddy Cruz Méndez||02/02/2001|
|Robert Rojas Vásquez||02/02/2001|
|José Edgardo Arévalo Hernández||20/07/2001|
|Eladio Cruz Leitón||08/02/2002|
|Jorge Arturo Torres Ortega||20/05/2005|
|Yúber Rodríguez Santamaría||16/12/2005|
|Luis A. Solano Morales||18/05/2007|
|Sofía Arce Flores||20/01/2012|
|Giuliano Salazar Gigli||20/01/2012|
|Jose A. Soto Segura||20/01/2012|
|Mercedes Días Herrera||11/02/2012|
|María A. Vargas Chacón||11/02/2012|
|Geiner Alvarado Huertas||20/04/2012|
|Marcos A. Méndez Sibaja||02/11/2012|
|Mauricio Vargas Salazar||12/12/2012|
|Jaime Del Castillo||26/07/2013|
|John Devereax Joslin||16/05/2014|
|María Estela Coghi||20/01/2015|
|Wim De Backer||20/01/2015|
|Carlos Guindon Standing||24/01/1989|
|Cynthia Echeverría López||24/01/1989
|Gregory Murray Kevin||24/01/1989|
|James Ervin Crisp McGowan||24/01/1989|
|Alan Pounds Joseph||24/01/1989|
|Robert M. Timm||24/01/1989
|Nathaniel T. Wheelwright||24/01/1989|
|Martha H. Moss||05/06/1990|
|Omar Coto Loría||05/06/1991|
|J. Mauricio García Cambronero||20/07/1994
|Jorge Vargas Cullel||17/08/2001
|César Santamaría Hidalgo||16/02/1990|
|Marvin Martín Chaverrí||24/01/2002
|Gilbert Jiménez Badilla||16/02/1992
|Carlos Luis Muñoz Brenes||19/12/2000|
|José Luis Cambronero Cruz||20/05/2005|