In 1997, a group of citizens from Mexico and the United States foresaw the need to solve a growing problem: the severe contradiction created by the environmental right to preserve the natural habitat of the monarch butterfly, and the birthright of local people to utilize the wood forest resources of the same area as a source of income.
Our founders realized that the local communities could be the driving force to restore the forest where the monarchs arrive from the North every winter, and at the same time, they could create their own sources of income by having the right training and support.
The reforestation program will soon celebrate its 20th anniversary thanks to some of the first founders whose heart is on the protection of the monarch butterfly and its overwintering sites. This is how in 2007, those founders initiated a new U.S.-based non-profit, La Cruz Habitat Protection Project, Inc. to continue the successful reforestation program initiated by Forests for Monarchs, and maintaining the partnership with La Cruz Habitat Protection Project-Mexico.
Through our program, Forests for Monarchs, La Cruz produces and donates high-quality native tree species to rural landowners. The need for wood products in poor rural communities is addressed by training farmers how to manage a sustainable harvest in their reforested lands. In return, this reduces the environmental impact on the remaining natural and protected monarch forests.