The Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management (SATIIM) is a non-profit, non-governmental organization.
The Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management was created in 1997 when Maya and Garifuna communities in southern Belize discovered that three years earlier, the government had turned their ancestral lands into a national park. Not much later they awoke to the sound of dynamite blasting seismic paths in preparation for oil drilling in this ‘protected area.’ The paths, wide enough for jeeps, ushered in new, illegal traffic into this unique ecosystem recognized by the RAMSAR Convention on Wetlands.
Since then, SATIIM has developed into an internationally recognized pioneer in Indigenous rights, as well as Indigenous-led environmental defense and sustainable development. SATIIM’s board is composed entirely of community leaders.
The organization is also at the forefront of innovations in sustainable development that combine traditional and modern practices. This Indigenous-led model increases food security and climate change resilience, reduces deforestation, and ultimately provides proof of the success of community-based sustainable development.