Casas de la Selva

One of our strongest environmental service partners is Puerto Rico’s Tropic Ventures Sustainable Forest Project. This center was started in 1983. Today, it is one of the top three managers of private protected areas on the island.

The aim of the project is to research and demonstrate the economic use of rainforest land using methods that do not destroy the rainforest ecology. Members of The Institute of Ecotechnics initiated this unique project pioneering experiments in sustainable rainforest ecology, through line-planting of valuable timber trees. Nearly 300 acres of the 1000-acre property have been planted with over 40,000 native and exotic hardwood trees with extremely promising results. Since 2003, plantation areas have been experimentally thinned, timber sold, and scientific research carried out all over the land.

700 acres remains as a wilderness preserve for watershed protection, research, and educational ecotourism. The project is certified as a Stewardship Forest, has an approved ‘Sustainable Forestry Stewardship Management Plan’, and is registered as an Auxiliary Forest.

-Casas de la Selva

Since 1983 many volunteers and scientists from all over the world have lived and worked there. Vámonos is an avid supporter of this organization. One of our best service-learning experiences is to bring student and adult volunteers to work and learn about sustainable forestry as they care for our environment. Some of the many tasks travelers can expect to participate in are:

  • Plant Nursery Work
  • Horticulture/Organic Gardening
  • Trail Design and Maintenance
  • Tree Identification
  • Pruning
  • Tree Tagging
  • Home Repairs
  • Carpentry
  • Tree Planting
  • Tool Maintenance
  • Permaculture
  • Workshop Management
  • Cement & construction
  • Bridge-building
  • Painting
  • Drainage ditch digging
  • Educational Trail Displays
  • Building/Repair
  • Cleaning
  • Scientific investigation
  • Homestead Maintenance

Contact us to find out how you can add this exciting service opportunity to your group’s itinerary!