Finca Hekiti was established in 2015 and is located in the Río Arriba neighborhood of Añasco and Anones of Las Marias. Our good friends Lisa, and Joe Sullivan, was struggling with the continued fight against cancer. Lisa had a vision for the land, a vision that included sustainable agroforestry, eco therapy, art therapy and a place where people could gather away from the city dynamic. We honor Lisa everyday through our work since her passing. The original piece of land was 3.57 acres. The total area of the land is now 9.1 acres, this same number of acres is currently in the process of being converted into a conservation easement under the non-profit organization Para La Naturaleza, formerly known as the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico.
Finca Hekiti's mission is to educate on the conservation of agroforestry systems and to harvest the best Fine Grain Cacao from Puerto Rico. Our vision is to become the best agroforestry educational farm and producer of the best fine grain cacao from Puerto Rico in the world. The values of our organization are to respect nature, honesty in the cultivation and handling of the product and above all service to our island community.
We honor the forest and its resources for the conservation, education and production of cocoa, and other fruits. At the same time that the farm is conserved, prepared and planted; agroforestry, conservation and community education are put into practice and emphasized with the people of Puerto Rico. We run educational experiences with Airbnb where we focus on the importance of forests with endemic species to the island, in particular endangered species.
Presently Hekiti Eco-Agroforesteria Education Organization is a non-profit foundation at the federal level (IRS), we are currently in the process of obtaining our registration number for the non-profit organization with the State Department and the Department of the Treasury of Puerto Rico.
Hekiti Eco-Agroforesteria Education Organization aims to promote a strong sense of community and increase ecotourism across the tropical island in the following ways:
As small family farmers ourselves, as well as the co-founders of the Rincon Farmers Market in 2008, we understand the importance and necessity for communal service. In 2020, we established a cooperative model of small family farm brigades (Fincas Hermanas) in which small family farms in the Las Marias area rotate each month spending 2 days of dedicating labor, skills, cooking, health services and child care with each family.
We are also allied with the Josco Bravo Project, school of agroecology, as a model school farm since 2016. The model has been duplicated in other areas as it has boosted morale and proved to be successful in goal projections and production.
By receiving an international community at the 9.1 acre conservation easement allied with Para La Naturaleza as a conservation easement, we open the path to constant promotion of a less invasive model of sustainable agriculture in which the impact is felt island wide and beyond. Our hope is to expand the conservation easement and support others with interest in doing the same while providing them with mentorship.
Since 2019, Finca Hekiti has successfully run Airbnb Experiences (Educational Farm Tours in a Cacao Forest). We receive international campers utilizing HipCamp, which has helped to support the local rural economy by bringing a conscious eco-consumer, creating a support system for local businesses. This has opened up the surrounding area to a previously non-existent tourism revenue and job source, as Las Marias and Añasco are two of the most economically poor municipalities on the island of Puerto Rico.
Your support and contributions will enable us to meet our goals and improve conditions. Your generous donation will fund our mission.