Itza Wood is a social enterprise in the Petén region of Northern Guatemala. With a team of ten carpenters and coordinators, they have been providing education, employment, and forest conservation to local communities, all through the sales of their meticulously handcrafted wood wares.
First piloting as a carpentry workshop on the site of a village school, The Jungle School, Itza Wood channels its profits to support the education for children from 9 surrounding villages. Today, about 400 boys and girls ranging from kindergarteners to high school students gather there, learning math, science, English, and computer skills. The majority of them are the first in their families to complete formal education, preparing themselves for opportunities in the global economy.
Itza Wood works with 8 wood species - ziricote, teak, catalox, chechen, granadillo, jobillo, pixi, and gesmo, which are all unique to the Petén Jungle, the largest remaining tropical forest in Central America also known as the Maya Biosphere.
Standing strong in their commitment to combat deforestation, Itza artisans only use sustainably sourced wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, most of which are harvested from naturally fallen trees. Since its inception in 2016, Itza Wood hasn't cut down one tree, but has instead planted over 45 thousand trees in the area, helping the Maya Biosphere continue to thrive for generations to come.