Do I really get to buy a tree?
Yes and no. By your donation, you don’t become the owner of one, physical tree — rather, you contribute to its saving. Since it isn’t possible to buy just one tree, but at least 2.5 acres (1 hectare) of the forest, our aim is to consolidate all donations made. This will then allow us to purchase said area of the rainforest.
The prices of particular trees are derived from the real price of the rainforest area (2.5 acres). However, the donation doesn’t equal to purchasing of the tree. After donating, you cannot fell the tree or handle with it in any other way; you also don’t get any proprietary rights. Nevertheless, your donation will help save it.
What do I gain from donating?
You don’t donate to get anything else than a good feeling from helping our planet. If we were to launch promotional products, card membership and other similar benefits, it would result in lowering of our finances which are intended for the saving of the rainforest. Such behavior would be meaningless, because our primary goal is to protect the biotope.
In what forms do you accept the donations?
We accept the donations via bank transfer, PayPal, credit card or cryptocurrencies. We also accept material donations sent to our legal address.
Do you operate in other countries than just Ecuador?
We are currently interested in the protection of the rainforests in Ecuador. However, we possibly may extend our project to other countries in the future.
Are you an official organization?
Yes. Our initiative has the status of a foundation in the Czech Republic. We would also like to extend our foundation to the USA in the future. All donations are recorded in accountancy books and we publish official annual reports.
Where are the HQs of your foundation?
The Save One Tree foundation’s Headquarters are located in the Czech Republic. Our Operations Center is located in Ecuador. We’re currently flexibly operating in both countries.
Can I visit the rainforest?
Yes, although only at your own expense. A paid guide can also be provided. However, we don’t incline towards such activity, as we see no point in any more burdening of the forest by visiting people.
Can you send me a photo of the tree?
Yes, there is the possibility to photograph the tree for you. Given the concept of the foundation, however, we see no point in such act, as you don’t, in fact, own the tree or even nature as such.
Why should I donate to particularly your organization, when there are other similar initiatives?
This is solely your decision. We don’t push anyone into donating. We can offer a working and effective concept: we don’t use persuasion or pressure as they seem to have no effect in the end. Our foundation works with a business model and thus is covered by legal protection and proprietary ownership right. We fight the business issues with business power and this leads the big corporations to listen and reason with us.
Do you support reforestation and renewal of the rainforests?
Renewal by reforestation is just not possible. Some organizations may claim that they support renewal of ecosystems by pursuing reforestation; this is often false, though. Although reforestation is a very positive aspect in every way, it usually leads to creating a whole new forest. On the other hand, rainforests as such can’t be restored. The trees in rainforests are usually over one thousand years old, with several biomes divided into different layers. It is simply impossible to renew the rainforest in a short period of time. We may take the reforestation of the damaged area in account in the future, but it’s not possible to call it a restoration of the rainforest.
What is my warranty?
There are no legal warranties. You can choose to trust us, or not. We did our best to secure the property, as to ensure it won’t be misused. Our primary goal is the protection of the area. Our organization cannot be sold or taken over by other companies. As long as the founders are alive, and even after their death, it isn’t and won’t be possible to handle the foundation’s “property” by any other means than those defined in the organization’s regulations. By these regulations, it isn’t possible to sell the property – it can only be protected.
What are your operational expenses?
Only 20 % of income go to the operational costs. We want to be as transparent as possible, thus we don’t mind sharing the percentage with you. Operational costs cover the legal service, travel expenses, rents, and potential rewards for our operatives. Other organization’s operational costs often exceed 60 % of their income, and this information is usually very difficult to trace back in their annual reports. We think that 20 % should do just fine for us. There might be the possibility to lower or raise the percentage according to our needs. However, this process would first have to be approved and voted on. Should this happen, we would inform you about it.
Is it possible to subtract the donation from tax basis?
For now, it’s possible in the Czech Republic. As for other countries, we don’t know for sure yet. That is also one of the reasons why we plan to extend our organization to the USA and other states in the future. Should your decision to donate stand solely on this problem, please, contact your tax adviser first. You can then contact us directly. Establishing the sister companies would not be a problem, although it would require another expenses and time – thus, your donation would have to be significant enough to cover the costs of founding such sister company.
How many members are in your organization?
The Save One Tree Foundation currently has 6 members. Three in the Board of Governors and three in the Supervisory Board. Our foundation’s status allows the appointment of the Executive Officer in the future. However, we don’t look for employees so far, as we want to keep our expenses at minimum. Our members work without the entitlement to remuneration and we only pay their operational expenses.
How can I become your associate?
As we don’t have enough funds and resources for our current operatives yet, we don’t offer this opportunity for now. And what’s more, we don’t look for activists – what we do look for, though, are experts on proprietary rights (ideally in the Ecuador legal environment) with advanced knowledge of English and Spanish language to join our team. However, our members work without the entitlement to remuneration.