Commitment and wisdom: William Contreras the guardian of native trees.

The Contreras Rojano family lives in the village of Alto Villa Clara. Near a very simple and small house – where a large family lives – William Contreras, an elderly man, safeguards a treasure.

Little by little, William Contreras has patiently built a magical nursery specialized in trees native to the Serranía del Perijá. William is a guardian of the biological memory of his territory. His work is absolutely admirable and corresponds with his countenance of a cheerful, serene and generous man. Within his farm there is a tree that is a legend of the region, the Macondo, an ancient tree of which there are very few left in the area. William is a macondo: with an ancient and special wisdom.

A wonderful farmer, much of his time is dedicated to caring for the trees and for one of his daughters who has a special condition and, together with his wife, Estela Rojano, they give her all the necessary care on a daily basis. William is part of the Tourist Routes for Forests and Peace because tourists go to his house to plant a native tree that he takes care of and reproduces. Above all, he wants to build a sort of kiosk where he can receive his neighbors and visitors who come to the tree planting day. In this space he imagines that he can give introductory talks about the local flora and people can relax in a “chinchorro” and have a glass of red wine while they listen to him.

Although William is an older man, he is still very vigorous, jovial and fun. Generous with his words and his humor, he is a wonderful host, an example of perseverance, joy and simplicity.

To plant trees with William is to plant the peace that this territory deserves. William comes to remind us of the importance of making forest in our hearts.

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