South America’s Gran Chaco

Photo: Paul Jeffrey/CWS

Photo: Paul Jeffrey/CWS

Key Partners

Chaco program consortium (CERDET, Fundapaz, CIPAE, JUM), Food Security partners (CIPAE, Mingara, CERDET), Small Grants Fund partner (CREAS)


Directly: 2,320 individuals in 28 communities
Indirectly: 6,983 individuals in 28 communities

Having secure access to land is key to ending hunger and poverty in indigenous communities in the South American Gran Chaco region. The largest dry forest in the world, the Gran Chaco extends across the border areas of Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay and is home to 25 different indigenous ethnic groups. It is also the scene of mass deforestation for cattle and soy industries that, in addition to causing huge environmental degradation, also has a profound impact on indigenous peoples. Evicted from their lands, today they live in conditions of extreme poverty with high levels of hunger and malnutrition, lack of safe access to water and increasing migration of young people in search of a brighter future elsewhere.

Through providing support for GPS mapping, small-scale agricultural production, leadership training for women and a community-based small projects fund, our program helps indigenous communities gain legal control over their land, improve their lives and contribute to the sustainable development of one of South America’s most important ecosystems.