The very existence of Howler monkeys is, sadly, at risk, and the familiar howl could soon be silenced forever. With your interest, and help, we can conserve their habitat and ensure that these impressive animals continue to animate the forests and fulfill their ecological role as seed dispersers in perpetuity.
Not long ago, the Howler monkey inhabited Most of the biogeographic region known as ‘The Choco’, an area of western Ecuador and Colombia, roughly the size of Pennsylvania. In recent years, deforestation, and forest fragmentation, for the purpose of cultivation and grazing, have pushed the Howler monkeys into the last remaining forest patches suitable for their existence.
In light of this critical situation, an energized group of concerned citizens in the town of Mompiche, (Esmeraldas Province, Ecuador), created The Howler Foundation (a non-profit in Ecuador). The sole objective of this effort is to conserve and create habitat to give the Howler monkey a fighting chance to once again thrive. Knowing that conserving habitat for one species will conserve habitat for many other forest-dwelling species, broadens the appeal of this project all the more.
Today, The Howler Foundation maintains and protects 100 hectares (240 acres) of forest habitat at various stages of maturity. This precious area is home to 8 Howler families (150-200 individuals). Hands-on conservation work is primarily done by foundation members, and we gladly welcome volunteers.
THIS is your chance to help!
Conservation entails a number of expenses such as vehicle fuel for patrolling habitat areas, signage, building materials, and fundraising. Currently, our efforts are limited by these related costs.
The Howler Foundation plans to open a café-gift shop in our hometown of Mompiche. We will refurbish a rustic structure generously ceded to us by our founding members. All food, beverages and products sold will be locally and organically produced, and will highlight indigenous crafts, creating a marketplace for indigenous artisans. Twenty percent (2o%) of gross sales will go directly to conservation of the Howler monkey habitat.
The Howler Café and Tienda Etnica will represent the collective essence of Howler territory. The Café will operate as a boutique coffee shop, serving local coffee, juices and herbal teas, along with organic/vegan desserts.
Tienda Etnica will be an outlet for indigenous crafts, including baskets & soaps, and local organic products including, cacao, chocolate & marmalades.
While Mompiche is famous as a surfing destination, and attracts tourists from all over the world, it is also ‘ground zero’ for preservation of the Howler monkey. The café-gift shop will be key to disseminating information about the local biodiversity, and expanding Mompiche’s allure beyond the waves and beaches, to include its stunning forests.
Eventually, The Howler Café & Tienda Etnica will sponsor a weekly farmers market for local producers. We will also expand our nature-based tourism and Howler habitat conservation efforts. We welcome the opportunity to host visitors and locals alike for the purpose of educating everyone about the current plight and future possibilities of the Howler.
If you’d like to help ‘on the ground’ .... get it touch!
If you’re not able to visit this South American paradise, please consider making a donation!
The building for the cafe-gift shop is a donation, but it is in need of repairs and upgrades. We will need to purchase furniture, display shelves, a refrigerator & oven, and smaller appliances. Our goal is to raise $4,750. to cover these initial costs. With volunteer help, the success of the café-gift shop, tours and other income generating activities, we expect to be self-funding in the very near future.
Your contribution is crucial to help us conserve what’s left of one of the most biodiverse tropical ecosystems in the world, the Howler monkey habitat.
We know you have many choices when it comes to worthwhile donations, and we’ll be forever grateful if you choose to help us help the Howler!
Be part of a local effort to make a global impact. Thank you!
- Savannah Judge
- Mary DaSilva
- Georgina Hutchinson
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