The People


Fundación Nucanchi Yuracuna is proud to bring volunteers from all over the Americas to work in Ecuador. This summer we are beginning a program of summer internships which we hope to continue each summer. We also welcome volunteers for shorter periods of time to come and take part in our programs. For more information, please check out how to get involved.


Santiago Diaz Aguirre

William Faria

Jennifer Osha

Danielle Weiss

Rodrigo Donoso

Co-Founder Santiago Diaz Aquirre is a mountain guide and conservationist in Riobamba, Ecuador. He lived in the United States for nine years and attended the New York Institute of Art. Since his return to Ecuador, he has participated in numerous reforestation projects and has helped to lay the groundwork for FNY. One of his great hopes is to help return the endangered condor to the Andes. He will be pursuing a degree in Wildlife Biology at the Universidad Catolica in Quito, Ecuador in 1999.

Co-Founder Jennifer Osha is a graduate student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, with an emphasis in tropical ecology. In 1997-1998 she was a WorldTeach volunter in Riobamba, Ecuador. She strongly believes in linking conservation programs with environmental education programs targeted at the local level. She will be returning this summer with the Tropical Resources Institute to study the current establishment and regenerative growth of the Polylepis in FNY's forests.

Co-Founder Rodrigo Donoso is a resident of Ecuador, but has also spent time in the United States. He is an experienced mountaineer and high altitude ecologist. He is the owner of Urvina and Alta Montana, the two bases of operation for FNY. He is currently studying reforestation of the Andes with native species. He is especially eager to involve local Ecuadorians in reforestation projects, and to begin training programs for interested locals in native flora and guiding.

Our Summer Interns...

Bill Faria is a junior at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore,MD. Majoring in Behavioral Biology, he is interested in studying the effects of synthetic hormone mimics from agricultural pollution on human and animal behavior. In addition to academics Bill is a member of the varsity wrestling team and works for the JHU Tutorial Project helping inner-city youths learn basic math and reading skills. This summer, he will be looking at the levels and effects of DDT in FY's forests.

Danielle Weiss graduated from the Environmental Studies program at the University of Waterloo in Canada. After traveling to the United States, the Middle East, and to Costa Rica, Danielle went on a one year study abroad program in Ecuador. Danielle volunteered at the Bilsa Reserve with the Jatun Sacha Foundation, where she visited surrounding communities, planted trees, and learned about agro-forestry. Danielle's favorite things to do are traveling, photography, meeting new and inspiring people, hiking, camping, mountain biking, alpine skiing, laughing, learning, and living! Danielle will facilitate community meetings using the Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) method which includes a variety of activities that encourage community participation. It relies on the involvement of both men and women to define their problems and to choose possible solutions. This information will be valuable in determining to whom the environmental education programs should be directed, as well as for future reference in creating any sustainable natural resource management plans.

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Fundación Ñucanchi Yuracuna
Conservation, Education, and Hope in the Andes of Ecuador
Date Last Modified: 5/18/99