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Implementing a climate resilient production model involving children for sustainable management of natural resources

 

About the countries

 

Next to the project we have supported in Cuba, his is the Foundation first project on the South-American continent.

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Bolivia remains one of the poorest countries in Latin America with a GDP per capita of $9,800 (while neighboring Chile shows $29,000) of which 13% relates to agriculture, which employs one third of the population. In terms of HDI of Bolivia ranks 118th place on 195 countries.

The UN estimates that 30,900 hectares of coca were planted in Bolivia, making it the third largest producer of coca after Colombia and Peru. Sales of coca leaf amounted to approximately US$265 million in 2009, representing 14% of all agricultural sales and 2% of Bolivia's GDP.  Though, this is grossly underestimated as it represents the declared production.  In 2005, “cocalero” union leader Evo Morales was elected president, and the policies he implements resulted in a significant reduction in poverty, illiteracy, and inequalities. Although he had modified the constitution to remain in power beyond 3 mandates and complete the country's suspected transformation into a narco state, he was ejected from power and fled to Mexico.  Bolivia experienced a significant political and institutional crisis following the subsequent 2019 elections. Several former interim government officials face arrest warrants for their role in what was a near coup, and the questions of independence and the impartiality of justice remain central to the public debate.

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Bolivia contains about 20% of the world's tropical glaciers. They are, however, vulnerable to global warming and lost 43% of their surface since1986 or more than two thirds of their mass. While the temperature in the Andes will keep on rising by the end of the century, glaciers could still lose 90% of their mass. In addition to glacial retreat affecting water availability, Bolivia can expect 4 main impacts because of climate change: less food security; more frequent and more intense “natural” disasters; an increase in mosquito-borne diseases; and more forest fires. 

Main objectives

It is about contributing to resolve a combination of different issues:

  • The extreme poverty affecting half of the targeted population, exacerbated by the decrease in the productivity of arable soils resulting from both human (terrace cultivation, deforestation, inadequate soil management, burning, overgrazing, pollution) and natural (water and wind erosion of soils aggravated by the rugged topography)

  • The decline of water resources because of climate change or caused by deforestation and/or degradation of the natural landscape.

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Key principles

The project will consist in designing a model resilient to the climate crisis for the population.  The main activities are:

1

Carry out reforestation and river cleaning campaigns with children/teenagers.

2

Train students in organic farming, climate and food justice.

3

Build or rehabilitate irrigation systems.

4

Train producers in reforestation, types of irrigation and sustainable agriculture.

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