“By the Green Route towards Sustainable Development”
TEL/FAX: (504) 440- 0385
La Ceiba, Honduras

Ricardo Steiner, President and Board Director
Norman Javier Flores, Executive Director


The Honduran Ecologist Network for Sustainable Development (REHDES) is a regional umbrella organization that encompasses 6 environmental NGOs. Its operational headquarters are located in the City of La Ceiba, on the Caribbean Coast. The Network is a civil Organization, non-political, non profit, with its own legal body, formed by legally constituted environmentalist Non Governmental Organizations. It obtained its Legal Body on the 29 of December 1997.

REHDES develops activities for the Protection, Conservation and Development of 13 Protected Areas by programs in:

  • Community Development with income generating programs for the local population.
  • Citizen Participation ,
  • Agro-Forestry with farm managing plans.
  • Strategic Plans for Public Use cantered on Ecotourism development,
  • Environmental Education.
These activities are oriented toward the diverse participants who have a temporary or permanent presence in the protected areas under the management of the NGOs.

During its founding and for approximately 3 years, the Canadian Agency for International Development supported the efforts of REHDES by means of financing for the strengthening of the Institution, Community Development activities, basic technical research and activities in the tourism field.

REHDES and its principal associates initiated activities with the support of the Quebec Union for Nature Conservation (UQCN-ACDI). Afterwards in 1999 the support of VIDA Foundation was obtained, and on the 14th of January, 2000 the Project "Promoting Conservation and Community Development through Ecotourism” was made concrete, it started activities with financing facilitated by USAID- VIDA Foundation (2000-2002); Other funds (2000-2001) for the project “Strengthening of the Work Network on the North Coast of Honduras” comes from National Fish and Wildlife Foundation NFWF-FSUMMIT, and in October 2000 the Project Establishment of Agro-Forestry Nurseries was finished, for the reforestation of buffer zones of the Protected Areas of the North Coast executed and provided by the Canadian Cooperation – UAP/ACDI.


To group efforts REHDES was founded as a Civil non profit Organization with its own legal body, apolitical, to join efforts among environmental NGOs, coordinating joint projects that use technical, logistical and economic resources in an optimum way, obtaining in this manner the adequate management of the existing Natural Resources in the following member NGOs:
  • AECOPIJOL-Ecological Association for the Conservation of Pico Pijol, Morazán, Yoro
  • BICA-Association for the Ecological Conservation of the Bay Island, Roatan, Guanaja y Utila
  • FUCAGUA-Calentura Guaimoreto Foundation, Trujillo, Colon
  • FUCSA-Cuero y Salado Foundation, La Ceiba, Atlántica
  • FUPNAPIB-Parque Nacional Pico Bonito Foundation, La Ceiba, Atlántida
  • PROLANSATE-Foundation for the Protection of Lancetilla, Punta Sal, Texiguat, Tela, Atlántida
  • FUPNAND-Parque Nacional Nombre de Dios Foundation, Pending.


Institutional Strengthening and Environmental ManagementThis component constitutes one of the fundamental development basis for NGOs, through the management and coordination capacities in the Management and Administration of Protected areas and Local Participation in the Communities, as well as work liaisons with the governmental, private and donating sectors. By means of management activities and coordination by the Directive Board, the Executive Committee, the Consultative Committee and the REHDES Executive Directorate.

Management and ConservationThe Network’s associate NGOs execute activities in the Delimitation and Marking of the Nucleus and Buffer zones as well as Maintenance and Signing in the Protected Areas. Likewise, Forest Guards are hired and equipped. They perform patrolling of the area and operatives for the conservation and co-partnership in the Natural Areas.

Community Development and ParticipationREHDES and its partner NGOs contribute significantly to the development of the communities settled in the buffer zones, particularly in Agroforestry, Education and Environmental Health, and in the generation of income for local beneficiaries.

Ecotourism and Public UseActivities of importance for the Development of the sustainability of the Protected Areas, of the NGOs and local populations, are those which participate actively in the management of the same. In the Ecotourism area, Diagnostics are made to detect the Ecotourism potential of the zones and then its Strategic Plans for Public Use are designed which can give way to the construction of Visitor Centers, low impact paths and other necessary infrastructure. An important program is the Capacitating of Bilingual Nature Guides and Ecotourism Promoters which prepares members of the surrounding communities of the Protected Areas to provide good guide services and the development of local community enterprises. A collateral benefit is the creation of jobs for the local population. Also work experience and commitments are shared through the Mesoamerican Ecotourism Alliance (AME) for the Development and Promotion of Ecotourism in Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. This work is at the national level, mostly in planning and development of Sustainable Tourism.


  • Strengthen the institutional, management and technical capacities of the associate NGOs and coordinate their efforts;
  • to improve the Management of the regional system of protected areas of the Caribbean Coast, supporting the inhabitants of this area in their development to Improve the quality of their lives.
  • The institutional development of the associate NGOs
  • Support to Ecotourism efforts in the region, management of available Resources for the execution of projects and management of conflicts


For more than 10 years the Conservationist NGOs have been working as a Regional Network to assure its sustainability, developing management and administrative activities in thirteen (13) Protected Areas on the Caribbean Coast and the Islands and one in Yoro:
  • Pico Pijol National Park in MORAZAN, YORO.
  • Sandy Bay-West End Marine Reserve, Port Royal Wildlife Refuge in ROATAN;
  • Turtle Harbor Wildlife Refuge in UTILA and Forest Reserve III in GUANAJA, BAY ISLANDS.
  • Capiro-Calentura National Park and Guaimoreto Lagoon Wildlife Refuge in TRUJILLO, COLON.
  • Cuero y Salado Wildlife Refuge and Pico Bonito National Park in LA CEIBA, ATLANTIDA.
  • Jeannette Kawas National Park, Punta Izopo National Park, Texiguat Wildlife refuge and Lancetilla Botanical Garden in TELA, ATLANTIDA.

REHDES has an Institutional Strategic Plan for 2000 to 2003 in which are defined the 4 fields of action in: INSTITUTIONAL DEVELOPMENT (NGOs and Protected Areas), ECOTOURISM, RESOURCE MANAGEMENT, and CONFLICT RESOLUTION. Likewise the Work System and the Projection Ambit is oriented during the next years (2000-2003) in the following aspects related with the 13 Protected Areas (AP’s) and by the 8 NGOs (includes REHDES) of the Honduran Caribbean Zone:
  • Protected Area CONSERVATION


This is the Network Organizational Structure established in the Strategic Plan. It is formed by the following elements:
    • General Assembly:Formed by one representative (usually the Board Director) of each member NGO and the Executive Directors.
    • Directive Board/Executive Committee: The Directive Board is formed by a limited number (usually from 5 to 7 members) of presidents of the Directive Boards of the member NGOs and by their corresponding Executive Directors, who form the Executive Committee, in charge of supporting the Directive Board members to make operative their decisions in each NGO.
    • Executive Director: Professional hired for the following priority responsibilities:
      • Coordinate the technical and administrative work of the organization.
      • Assure the management of resource for the implementation of programs.
      • Strengthen the relation and integration between members of the board.
    • Consultative Committee: Formed by people or entities outside of the organization that will be called to give their opinion on specific subjects, as needed. Can include top level Technicians, private institutions (ex. CBM, VIDA Foundation) Foreign NGO’s, public institutions (ex. Instituto Hondureño de Turismo) among others.
    • Administration: People hired to perform functions of administration and accounting of funds.
    • Documentation and Information Center:A systematization and reference center of experiences generated by the member NGO’s.
    • Institutional Development Program: Oriented toward the strengthening and direct development of REHDES and its member NGOs. Objectives: Strengthen institutional , technical and management capacities of the REHDES system, incorporating values to achieve efficiency in the sustainable management of the natural resources and reduce external dependency.
    • Ecotourism Program: Oriented towards setting the foundations for regional development and management of Ecotourism, and to support member NGOs in implementing this management in the local ambit. Objectives: Promote institutional and community self- management by the way of ecotourism to facilitate the conservation of biodiversity.
    • Resource Generation Program: Oriented towards the generation of resources to support the actions of member NGOs (consolidation, follow-up and evaluation of regional proposals) and to assure the sustainability of the organization (other alternatives such as consulting service fees and financial services, among others). Objectives: Guarantee the financial sustainability of the Network for a better functioning of the member NGOs and of REHDES.
    • Conflict Solution Program: Oriented towards the creation of spaces for the pacific and equilibrated solution of regional and local magnitude conflicts in the protected Areas and NGOs. Objective: Conciliate the interests of the beneficiaries and users of natural resources of the Protected areas, endeavoring for a rational use of these resources.
As of May 2002, REHDES has a payroll of two people; One Executive Director and an Administrator.


Donors and Institutional Alliances
Honduran Environmental and Development Foundation VIDA – USAID
RARE Center for Tropical Conservation
Cooperation Alliance
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF)
SUMMIT Foundation

Other Collaborators and Donors
Biodiversity in Priority Areas Project PROBAP-Hn
Mesoamerican Biological Corridor – Hn
Virtual Foundation/ECOLOGIA - USA
ACCESO Foundation
Wings of Change USA / Flying for Conservation
Green Wood Project / NFWF
Mesoamerican Ecotourism Alliance /Honduras-Mexico-Belize-Guatemala (Project for the Sustainable Development of Tourism in Central America)