2023’s Best Environmental Charities: RFUS Recognized for Supporting Indigenous-Led Climate Change Solutions 

As 2023 draws to a close, Rainforest Foundation US (RFUS) proudly reflects on a year filled with significant accomplishments. We’ve supported Indigenous-led programs to monitor 13.7 million acres of rainforests and have partnered with over 200 Indigenous and local communities. In Guyana, we helped to protect 4.5 million acres of traditional lands through conservation plans developed with Indigenous partners, and made significant progress in Peru by helping secure 17 new land titles, with an additional 20 in progress, totaling over 105,000 acres for 37 communities. Additionally, in Guyana, we trained 10 new community paralegals, and in Peru, we facilitated two Tech Camps, introducing four new technologies. All these efforts are part of our broader commitment to work with Indigenous partners to advance land titles for over 8.5 million acres of Indigenous lands across Panama, Guyana, and Peru.

This year, our commitment to protecting rainforests and supporting Indigenous communities has been recognized by Marie Claire, Impactful Ninja, and Donor Box, highlighting our strategic and effective approach to environmental stewardship. It’s also why we consistently receive a 4-star rating on Charity Navigator, and Gold Transparency with Candid.

  • Marie Claire acknowledges our work as innovative in Brazil, Panama, Peru, and Guyana, and spotlights our groundbreaking Rainforest Alert program. This pioneering initiative, harnessing remote sensory technology for community-led monitoring, has dramatically curbed illegal deforestation, showcasing our innovative solutions in action.
  • Impactful Ninja commends RFUS for its deep partnerships with Indigenous communities. They emphasize our integrated approach to supporting Indigenous-led solutions to the climate crisis, including assistance in developing land management plans and securing legal representation for Indigenous communities to protect their land rights.
  • Donor Box highlights our unique approach of collaborating with Indigenous communities to protect rainforests, which is a key strategy in combating climate change and protecting biodiversity. These recognitions underscore RFUS’ position at the forefront of tropical forest conservation.

Every year, we’re committed to earning and keeping the trust of our donors, ensuring most funds directly enhance our programs alongside our Indigenous partners. 

We recognize the vital role of rainforest communities who face significant risks in their efforts to safeguard their forests. Supporting them is not just our mission; it’s our honor.

Here are just some of the lists we’ve been featured on in recent years:

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Cinema on the River: A Floating Film Festival in the Heart of the Peruvian Amazon

The Muyuna Floating Film Festival showcased a unique floating screen, bringing films directly to riverside communities in the Peruvian Amazon. During the festival, Rainforest Foundation US supported an Indigenous Cinema Workshop, emphasizing the urgent need to understand these issues from the perspective of Indigenous peoples and local communities.


Right to the Land: Indigenous Land Title as a Climate Strategy

Here’s an insight at the heart of RFUS’s work: Lands legally controlled by Indigenous peoples and local communities show lower rates of deforestation—up to a 66% reduction in forest cover loss. Listen to Cameron Ellis and Kim Chaix of Rainforest Foundation US speak about the power of land titling.

Take Action Against Climate Change

Rainforests absorb and store more carbon dioxide than all other types of forests, making rainforest protection one of the most effective solutions to climate change. Support indigenous peoples on the frontlines of rainforest protection.

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Didier Devers
Chief of Party – USAID Guatemala

Didier has been coordinating the USAID-funded B’atz project since joining Rainforest Foundation US in April 2022. He holds a Master’s in Applied Anthropology and a Bachelor’s in Geography. Before joining the organization, Didier worked for 12 years in Central and South America on issues of transparency, legality, governance, and managing stakeholders’ processes in the environmental sector. Prior to that he worked on similar issues in Central Africa. He speaks French, Spanish, and English, and is based in Guatemala.