It’s Latino Conservation Action Week
Latino Conservation Action Week is July 26 to August 2 – an initiative founded by Hispanic Access Foundation to support Latino involvement in getting outdoors and protecting natural resources.
With a push this week, the members of the Latino community are demonstrating support for conservation through organized hikes, camp outings and educational events,
“Latino communities are diverse across the US. But one commonality is a connection to the outdoors and open space. We celebrate, enjoy, and conserve nuestra madre tierra guided by our culture, traditions, and hope for the future,” said José G. González, founder and director of Latino Outdoors.
Nuestra madre tierra, of course, is Our Mother Earth.
Here in the Northeast, there are plenty of members of the Latino community working hard to conserve and protect our Mother Earth. Check out this a roundup showcasing some of the good work Latino conservationists are doing:
Growing up in Puerto Rico gave Emarie Ayala-Diaz the opportunity to enjoy and explore the beach, which inspired her career in marine biology. Now, she’s a wildlife biologist at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia.
Natalia Lopez studied climate change at the University of Puerto Rico at Humacao before undertaking a 2013 Shorebird Management Summer Internship, also at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. There, she worked on monitoring breeding populations of piping plovers and other shorebirds, and even went on to represent the Service at a conference in Hawaii.
Also, check out this story about how working with the Belize Foundation for Research and Environmental Education led to farmers transitioning from intensive agriculture to sustainable agroforestry to grow cacao—restoring cleared forests for shade-grown agriculture. (In a strange twist of coincidence, the funding for this project came from a 1998 natural resources restoration settlement with the companies responsible for contaminating the Nyanza Chemical Superfund site—considered by the EPA one of the worst Superfund sites, and less than 5 miles from where I grew up in Massachusetts.)
As a bonus, check out this article from NPR highlighting the Bird Ambassadors — a group of migrant women and children that feed and shelter migratory birds in Patterson Park, Baltimore, Maryland.