In 2008, Fundacion DIA started with a tree planting program with smallholder farmers in order to combat environmental degradation and desertification of the region while at the same time providing alternative sources of income to the farmers. In 2008 we started with timber tree species planted in mixed plantations. In 2014, it was decided to integrate cocoa- and moringa trees with mixed timber species. By doing so, farmers receive short term income from cocoa (3-4 years after establishment) and moringa (<1 year after establishment). Fundacion DIA aims to establish around 300 hectares (300,000 trees) of these mixed tree plantations (agroforestry systems) by 2020. This will generate an estimated 16,000 m3 timber in 30 years, around 80 MT/year of fine flavor cocoa beans and around 354 MT/year of moringa seeds. For all three products, both the local- and export market is very favorable and promising.
Besides introducing agroforestry in smallholder farming systems, Fundacion DIA is also collaborating with ECOSIA (www.ecosia.org) and the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MARENA) in the reforestation of degraded conservation areas around Leon. In 2017 and 2018 Fundacion DIA will plant 700,000 native trees in the vulcano region Pilas-El-Hoyo.