In 2021, some camps are organising camp experiences for you to participate in. We are hopeful that they will be able to go ahead. Camps will follow the local conditions closely, and may have to cancel activities if the local COVID-19 situation forces them to do so. If you have already signed up for a camp-activity you will be informed when this happens. We will update the website also, when such decisions are taken. Please check your own local authority travel advisory to see if you can travel to or return from the camp after the activity. At all times, when at camps, please observe it’s COVID-19 policy (such as wearing masks, social distancing, washing hands, etc). 

CAMP CONTOUR LINES
Greater Livingstone area, Guatemala

Since 2018, Camp Contour Lines has been working to restore and rehabilitate 200 square kilometres of land that was once tropical rainforest  throughout the Greater Livingston Area, on Guatemala’s Caribbean Coast.

Camp Contour Lines plants tropical agro-forests mainly in Q’echi (mayan) villages, and has worked with hundreds of people in over 171 project sites on over 100 acres to date, restoring land that has been degraded by slash-and-burn chemical corn farming with 94,000 new trees, shrubs and annual plants. 

What to expect at camp

Campers can expect intensive, 2-week courses on our themes of sustainable construction, land restoration and tropical agroforestry, regenerative businesses, and community development. (dates TBC).  Longer term positions are limited to paying homestayers  skilled interns (see “Who we Need” below), helping us expand our agro-reforestation projects into more communities throughout the Livingston Area.
 

Accommodations are a homestay with a local family in one of the villages where we work.  Support a local family while taking on projects to help the community.  Private cabin, with outlying bathroom, electricity and shared shower.  Costs are $26 per day for board and three meals per day.

Who is needed (at times when camp courses aren't running)

Internship positions are limited and based on needed skills

  • Photography, video editing
  • Social media, web design, SEO
  • Research scientists (soil biologists, agronomists, ecologists, anthropologists),
  • Grant writing, fundraising
  • Organising community cooperatives, processing and marketing products
  • Soil testing, mapping, GIS
  • Drone operation

Vision and Socio-economic-ecological context

The Greater Livingston Area (GLA) includes the town proper and 25 villages in the surrounding jungles, with approx 20,000 residents of Garifuna, Qechi, and Ladino cultures.  Of the GLA’s 200km sq of former rainforest, over 70% is in rotation of slash-and-burn corn subsistence or cow pasture, both with low income and high ecological degradation here in these high-rainfall (i.e. high erosion) tropics.  Poor roads and land divisions isolate many of the villages, which suffer from unemployment, malnutrition and illiteracy. 

Transitioning their lands to regenerative use empowers these communities to resolve such local issues, while contributing to global reforestation initiatives for carbon sequestration, erosion control, preservation of biodiversity and development of sustainable economies. Contour lines as an agro-reforestation method form the backbone of this regenerative transition. They stop erosion, build soil fertility and encourage organic and polyculture methods, planted with trees that both generate economic wealth and restore ecosystem health.

Camp Contour Lines believes in hard work, not merely preaching and wasting time. We directly provide training, trees and funds to local communities to plant their own projects, on their own lands, to help enable their regenerative transition. 

Camp Contour Lines aims to regenerate 100 sq km of GLA in 5 years, transitioning cornfields pasture to both agroforestry systems and restored rainforests.

While we teach many regenerative agriculture methods—cover-cropping, planting polycultures and legumes, mulching, rotational grazing—by focusing on one and applying it (planting on contour), we adopt a hands-on, project-oriented approach, one measurable in meters of progress.  Contour lines form the backbone of a regenerative landscape.   Terraces of fertility form over time.  Once woven with the curves of contour, rural communities will continue farming regeneratively long after our work is done.

And while Camp Contour Lines focuses on land use, our projects form the roots of a greater cultural transition. Processing and marketing of regenerative products, eco-tourism and reforestation incentives all provide sustainable income to communities. It reverses the region’s trade deficit, from importing the garbage of foreign corporations to exporting healthy, organic produce from local campesinos. The resulting improvements in diet, employment, education and reduction of migration all inspire a cultural regeneration. 

Ultimately our goal is change in mindset, one that unites humans with nature, farms with forests, the economic with the ecological—one that restores the ecosystems of the Greater Livingston Area while empowering and enriching it’s people.  In this sense Contour Lines are the vanguard of a regenerative society.

  Established Camp

Organising Partners

Contour Lines Corp
APROSARSTUN (local nonprofit)
Frutas del Mundo (tree nursery)
AMMUNDIS (multicultural women’s association)
Ak-tenamit (alternative school)
Casa Guatemala (children’s school),
Gamgadewale (Garifuna farm)
Municipality of Livingston, Guatemala
COCODE (community council) of several rural villages

Facilities

Homestay with locals
Sanitation – medium
Electricity
Kitchen (vegetarian)
Wifi
Cellphone service
Swimming facilities

Restoration Activities

Food growing
Tree planting
Erosion control
Soil building
Habitat creation
Community building
Regenerative entrepreneurialism
Restoration of livelihoods
Natural building

Latest News from the Camp

Camper Application Form

Once you have submitted this form to inform us of your intention to join the course, please click on the blue button on the right to pay for your place. 

What you must do to ensure your own safety at an Ecosystem Restoration Camp

Your safety is very important to us. Most camps are in locations that are completely safe for you to travel to. Some camps are in locations where there is civil unrest, higher levels of crime, or in areas where there could be severe nature events (earthquakes, tornados, vulcanic eruptions). We strongly advise you to check with your national authority’s travel advisory service to see if there are specific travel advisories for the region you are travelling to. We strongly advise you to comply with that travel advisory. If there is a negative travel advisory for the area you plan to go to, we want to impress on you that it is your decision to not heed the warnings and go. ERC can then not be liable in that situation if something happens to you.

Work at camps is usually safe. The camp coordinators make your safety their highest priority too. But you will be working with tools and sometimes even (heavy) machinery. Sometimes the terrain can be slightly treacherous. Heat or cold can become a problem for people at work that do not take the necessary measures to prevent injury from weather conditions. Especially in remote locations, all people at an Ecosystem Restoration Camp will need to watch out for eachother’s safety. For this reason we ask you to also sign our Code of Conduct, through which you commit to contributing to a safe environment at camps for all that are there with you. Take yours and all other camper’s safety seriously! Together, while watching over eachother, we can restore our ecosystems safely and successfully.

Contact us:

info@ecosystemrestorationcamps.org

Stichting Ecosystem Restoration Foundation /
Ecosystem Restoration Camps 2020

Wechelerweg 37
7431 PD Diepenveen
The Netherlands

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