Chaa Creek Cares

Social Impact - Chaa Creek Cares

When they first opened their farm at Chaa Creek to the public in 1981, Mick and Lucy Fleming had two goals – to provide an authentic wilderness experience that offered insights into the beautiful Belizean rainforest they’d come to love, and to make sure their fledgling eco-resort protected that environment and supported the local communities that are such a part of it

As Chaa Creek grew, so did its contributions to the land and people of Belize, and Chaa Creek Cares – with a commitment to put 10% of all room revenue directly into environmental and community projects - was born.

In addition to providing tangible benefits, we’ve been delighted to see how Chaa Creek Cares enhances our guests’ vacations, and that Chaa Creek continues to attract travellers who share our commitment to sustainable tourism and responsible travel. With one dollar out of every ten they spend on their accommodation helping to support Belize’s beautiful, unique ecosystems and multicultural communities, Chaa Creek’s guests are making a difference – while enjoying what we hope are truly satisfying, memorable vacations.

Here are just a few examples of what happens when an eco-resort, visitors and the local community come together under Chaa Creek Cares™.


 

Eco Kids Summer Camp

Social impact at chaa creek with eco kids summer camp learning

Chaa Creek offers a weeklong summer camp scholarship program for 24 Belizean school children in order to educate them about biodiversity, natural resource conservation, the ancient Maya, traditional healing, and the three "R's" Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle.

The program aims to instill memorable values that will have an impact on the way children conduct their lives, their relationship with our fragile Earth and the sustainable development of our future.

Some of our guided educational activities include hiking to ancient Maya sites where we will perform archaeological excavations, horseback Riding through Jungle Trails while studying the medicinal flora within our 400-acre private reserve, Song writing and talent show sessions, hands-on sustainable organic farming techniques, and supervised water activities.

  • What you need to know:

  • The Summer Camp is a 7 Nights/8 Days all-inclusive scholarship
  • The Children's Summer Camp Scholarship Program includes lodging at the Belize Rainforest Retreat, all meals plus snacks three times a day, daily scheduling of educational events, arts & craft materials and t-shirt, Camp Counselors 24/7, and guided tours with our licensed naturalist guides
  • To participate, Belizean children must write a 300-word essay in proper English on why YOU want to be an ECO KID
  • 24 children are selected by merit via a team of judges in two winning categories: Eco greenies (9-10 years) and Eco saplings (11-12 years)

 

Pack-a-Pound Initiative

pack a pound program chaa creek cares social impact

Our Pack-a-Pound initiative gives Chaa Creek’s guests an opportunity to donate school supplies to classrooms in Belize. We encourage our guests to share one pound of their luggage space for materials (pens, pencils, erasers, etc.) to be donated to a local school.

Guests can also send supplies to Chaa Creek via mail to P.O. Box 53, San Ignacio, Cayo, Belize C.A.

Chaa Creek gathers the school supplies, packs them off by pound and then distributes to the schools and students who need it most.

School supplies that can be sent include but are not limited to:

  • Age-appropriate story books in English
  • Age-appropriate story books in Spanish
  • Arts and crafts materials
  • Coloured construction paper
  • Coloured pencils
  • Maps Notebooks
  • Solar calculators
  • Used textbooks for teachers
  • Watercolour paint brushes

If you would like to donate to this cause kindly contact our program coordinator Lydia Guerra at frontdeskmgr[at]chaacreek[dot]com or call us directly to +501-880-0049.

Your assistance would be greatly appreciated by Belizean teachers and students who receive these school supplies.

 

Chaa Creek School Scholarship Program

The Chaa Creek Scholarship Program annually provides 10 local students with full board educational scholarships at secondary and tertiary levels, paying for tuitions, fees, books and other necessities. Chaa Creek believes that the education of the children of Belize is the key to the preservation of our natural environment which in turn supports the sustainability of our tourism industry and thusly the economic well-being and social advancement of the people of Belize. We are committed to this vision and continually strive to provide the financial and physical assistance required to achieve this goal.

 

Employee Dollar Club

Chaa Creek assists its employees financially by setting up the Employee Dollar Club – an inhouse coverage that helps employees with up to $1,000bzd for emergency purposes. The employee pays $1bzd per week, with managers paying $6bzd weekly and this is placed into an employee savings account. The total is then matched by Chaa Creek.

 

Cleanup Campaigns

Chaa Creek Cares River Cleanup Campaign Social Impact

Keeping Belize’s rivers and roadsides clean one bag at a time. This initiative is just one of Chaa Creek’s many commitments in keeping a clean and healthy environment.

We believe that such actions encourage local Belizeans to follow suit and allows our international visitors to appreciate how deeply Belizeans care about their environment. They will foster an understanding as to why Belize has earned such a glowing global reputation for environmental awareness and sustainable tourism.

 

Environmental Education Outreach Program

butterfly on the road program chaa creek cares social impact

Our Environmental Education Outreach program takes environmental education directly to the schools and many special events throughout Belize. For example, our Butterfly On The Road program takes our Blue Morpho, Malachite and Owl butterflies to schools in nearby communities to educate children on the importance of butterflies in the eco system.

 

Belize Foundation For Conservation NGO

The Belize Foundation for Conservation (BFC) is a legally registered Non-Governmental Organization that was established by Mick and Lucy Fleming and is based at the Chaa Creek Natural History Centre.

The mission of the BFC is to “promote environmental education, cultural awareness and sustainable conservation practices” throughout Belize. The Foundation serves as the governing body for the many environmental and social projects and programs that are implemented and supported by Chaa Creek.

 

Financial Assistance

sports sponsorship and financial contributions chaa creek cares social impact

Financial assistance and in-kind gift certificate donations and community support programs benefit the Octavia Waight old folks center, the Cayo Deaf Institute, Marla House of Hope Orphanage, Belize Wildlife & Referral Clinic, The Raptor Center, Friends for Conservation and Development, several sport teams, among many others.

 

Community Liaison

Chaa Creek supports and works with local organizations and groups conducting community-based conservation and improvement projects such as anti-litter campaigns and development and maintenance of public parks

 

Ecotourism and Responsible Travel Education

education at our natural history center social impact

Each year the Lodge hosts and educates hundreds of local and overseas students and sponsors internship positions in ecotourism and responsible travel through programs at our Natural History Centre, Blue Morpho Butterfly Breeding Centre, the Maya Medicinal Plant Trail and other Chaa Creek operations. Educational field trips within the Chaa Creek Nature Reserve are offered to local and international schools, universities and community groups

 

Contingency Reserves

Chaa Creek has in-house procedures and resources in place to respond in times of need. Whether from individual tragedy or natural disasters, Chaa Creek will always respond to calls for assistance