Community-led forest monitoring and protection

Published: 16 July 2021
Last edited: 16 July 2021

Empowering the community to take the lead on their forest monitoring and conservation goals is a key building block of this replicable solution. After community volunteer leaders are identified, they are equipped with the training, tools, and materials needed for their management plan. They may also work with local law enforcement on monitoring illegal logging and other extraction of biodiversity from the forest. Some communities in the Chinantla had a need for scientific forest monitoring data to be able to apply for a national program that provided payment in exchange for environmental stewardship work. The training and skill-building elements of the project were adapted to fit this need, so community members were trained in forest data collection so that they were empowered to collect this information on their own, thereby becoming eligible to qualify for the ecosystem services payment program.


Alliance and partnership development
Collection of baseline and monitoring data and knowledge
Communication, outreach and awareness building
Education, training and other capacity development activities
Enforcement and prosecution
Management planning
Scale of implementation
Phase of solution
Documentation and dissemination of results

Enabling factors

  • Beneficiary communities who have self-identified as wanting assistance are more eager to take the lead on forest monitoring activities

  • Willing community members are able to take on volunteer leadership roles

  • Monitoring activities are based on management plan developed along with the community

Lessons learned

  • Community leaders become champions of the local ecosystem and can inspire others in their families and communities