Our forest ecosystems are the unsung heroes of Palau’s island ecosystems. They may not be as colorful or well known as our coral reefs but they are just as important. Palau’s forests play an important part in the water cycle by ensuring that our island’s water table is healthy, reduces erosion and sedimentation and ensures a bountiful home to many of our endemic bird species. Palau’s forests work hard for our people and the planet. They act as carbon sinks that reduces greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere by capturing carbon. Our forests are a most valuable resource and were noted as such by the late Mr. Marcello Vincenzo Pierantozzi who saw much value in them and set aside forested land he owned with his wife Sandra S. Pierantozzi to become a protected area. This altruistic act inspired the Palau Conservation Society to create a new program called the MVP Forest of Hope Legacy Program that aims to protect and restore Palau’s forest ecosystems. As it does so, it honors the legacy of the man whose generous act resulted in a conservation milestone for Palau. The MVP Forest of Hope is the first private lands protected area in Palau and is a model of impactful environmental stewardship.

There is a saying that good things comes in threes. Mr. Marcello Pierantozzi’s visionary leadership led him to conserve a forest, this inspired PCS to create a forest program to sustainable conserve forest ecosystems in Palau and on July 19th 2023 Mrs. Sandra S. Pierantozzi gifted $50,000 to establish the endowment account that would sustainably finance the MVP Forest of Hope Legacy Program. It was a bittersweet day to receive the grand gift as it also marked the one month anniversary of Mr. Pierantozzi’s passing. However, Madam Pierantozzi is honored that her MVP’s legacy will live on forever and hopes that new program will raise awareness on the importance of terrestrial preservation. “Al telmall a daob eng belkul a kmo ng telmall a beluu.” The Palau Conservation Society Board of Directors is forever thankful to the late MVP and Madam Pierantozzi for their continuous support. We will forever miss MVP, but as he’s favorite saying goes “this is not goodbye, we’ll see you later”.

For any individual or company interested in donating to the cause, kindly contact PCS at 488-3993 or stop by our office located on the 2nd floor of Bai ra Maiberel.

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