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Learn more about the Rivers and Forests Alliance (RAFA)

The Rivers and Forests Alliance (RAFA) is committed to preserve, protect, and regenerate Costa Rica’s Pacuare river basin, its forests, and biodiversity together with our communities for a sustainable future.

Hear about Rafael Gallo's vision, his love of the Pacuare River, and how the Rivers and Forests Alliance got started to carry forward his conservation legacy.

Introduction to the El Tigre South-South Project

The 2008-2010 Ecotourism Project, funded by the South-South Project, is an example of Rafael's vision and commitment to helping Pacuare communities develop ecotourism projects rooted in sustainability principles.

El Tigre Sustainable Community Video

This short documentary tells the story of the El Tigre community in the Costa Rican rainforest above the Pacuare River Gorge. Thanks to the leadership of Rafael Gallo's adventure company, Rios Tropicales, El Tigre received a grant in late 2008 from Fundecooperacion as part of the South-South Project, an international collaboration between Costa Rica and The Kingdom of Bhutan. The project transformed El Tigre into a model of sustainable community development.

Navigating Rough Waters with Rafael Gallo in Costa Rica

The #TourismStrong Video Series featured a heartwarming interview with Rafael Gallo in April 2020 talking about community and inspiration. Gallo compared the early days of the global COVID-19 pandemic, and also his own personal health challenge with pancreatic cancer, to a first descent of a Class VI rapid. He sends a message of hope founded on his strong team of family and community supporting him. While Rafa passed away on March 23, 2021, his indomitable spirit lives on in everyone who knew him.

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