Paso Pacífico — Nicaragua (2007)

Paso Pacífico’s sea turtle outreach and education campaign in San Juan del Sur, Rivas, Nicaragua, is aimed at communities surrounding the la Flor Wildlife refuge, an important olive ridley and leatherback nesting ground. Paso Pacífico strives to increase local appreciation for sea turtles and their environment and to enhance cooperation among La Flor reserve managers for the benefit of the sea turtles and sustainable tourism. With a 2007 SWOT Outreach Grant, workshops were held in the communities of La Tortuga, Ostional, and Escamequita, sharing lessons from volumes I and II of SWOT Report, to emphasize the importance of community involvement. Sixty-five participants, including fishers and youth from the community, were introduced to the sea turtle species of the region and the conservation challenges they face. Individual meetings to explain the campaign were held with community leaders, members of the municipal government, and the nicaraguan ministry of environment. Paso Pacífico plans to continue efforts to promote coastal and marine conservation through various ecotourism, educational, and community-led turtle monitoring programs.