Felipe Cruz Scholarship contributes to the training of park rangers in Galapagos

02 Sep 19 /

At the Charles Darwin Foundation, we firmly believe that education is the key to environmental conservation and sustainability. We know that education and outreach are essential to the success of Galapagos conservation. We are aware that educating and providing new experiences, standards and resources benefits everyone. Therefore, our commitment to community education is one of our priorities.

"Education is the most powerful weapon that can be used to change the world." 
Nelson Mandela

Capacitación para Guardaparques Galapagueños en Colorado, EEUU.
Park Rangers from Galapagos during their abroad training, in Colorado, USA. Photo by: Cristian Cáceres, GNPD.

The “Felipe Cruz Bedón Scholarship” was created in August 2018 in honor of our colleague and friend from Floreana Island, who left a legacy and example of leadership and tenacity at every level. The scholarship aims to train officials from the Galapagos National Park DirectorateDirectorate (GNPD) and the Galapagos Bio Security Agency (ABG). Currently, through this scholarship, we provide financial support to park rangers, inspectors, and technicians so that they can carry out studies in their areas of interest. Thanks to the training, we can together become the main actors in the conservation and sustainability of Galapagos.

The “Felipe Cruz Bedón Scholarships” are financed with part of the funds from the education component of the Galapagos Biodiversity and Education for Sustainability Fund financed by Ecoventura.

Cristian Cáceres, guardaparque acreedor a la Beca “Felipe Cruz Bedón”
Cristian Cáceres in Colorado, USA. Photo by: Cristian Cáceres, GNPD.

Rafael Chango, Cristian Cáceres and Marcelo Gavilanes, residents of Galapagos, fulfill the important role of ranger of the Galapagos National Park. They have several years of experience in their work, which began at a very young age. Being a park ranger is more than a profession, it is their true passion. For this reason, they were awarded the "Felipe Cruz Bedón" Scholarship to carry out training abroad.
Rafael, Cristian and Marcelo returned at the beginning of August, after 5 weeks - from July 2 to August 3 - of intense study at Colorado State University, in Fort Collins, USA. During this time, they studied an International Course for the Management of Protected Areas.

The training was attended by 24 park rangers from Latin America, including representatives from Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Chile, among others. The three Galapagos representatives also made a presentation to all course attendees, each on their own subject of expertise. Cristian presented on the management of visiting sites, Rafael on the eradication of invasive species and reforestation, and Marcelo presented on his field activities in Galapagos.

Rafael commented: "We had 15 days of training in the school and 15 days in the field. This was undoubtedly an enriching experience, as it was an exchange of knowledge among all those attending the training, through presentations of each of the activities they carry out in their countries".

Watch a summary of their great experience in the following videos:


Now back in the Enchanted Islands his mission is to replicate in his work teams the information learned, their experiences and especially to develop initiatives that contribute to the conservation of this natural paradise.

With your support, we can continue to promote education for the sustainability of Galapagos, donate now.


Andres Cruz

Protect Galapagos, Impact the World

The impact you make on this small ecosystem of enormous biodiversity is part of a larger footprint you are leaving for the world's future. Join us on our mission to safeguard one of our planet’s most important natural treasures through science and conservation action by making a donation today. Thank you for making an impact with us.