PUBLIC NEWS SERVICE: Latino Advocacy Week Promotes Environmental Justice
This week, Hispanic environmental advocates are heading to Washington, D.C., from around the country to engage lawmakers on issues affecting us all, like clean air, pristine waters, and the fight against climate change.
La Tercera Semana Anual de Defensa Latina de Hispanic Access comienza el 24 de marzo
La Tercera Semana de Acción Política Latina de Hispanic Access Foundation comienza el 24 de marzo y se extiende hasta el 30 de marzo de 2023. La Semana de Acción Política Latina se lanzó en 2021 con el objetivo de ayudar a los latinos a convertirse en defensores de los temas que les apasionan. Durante esta semana, varios grupos comunitarios, organizaciones sin fines de lucro, organizaciones basadas en la fe, líderes comunitarios y funcionarios electos promoverán la legislación, el desarrollo de capacidades y los esfuerzos de defensa para elevar y apoyar a los latinos en todo el país.
Hispanic Access’ Third Annual Latino Advocacy Week Kicks Off March 24
Hispanic Access Foundation’s third annual Latino Advocacy Week begins on March 24 and runs through March 30, 2023. Latino Advocacy Week was launched in 2021 with the goal of helping Latinos become advocates for issues they are passionate about. During this week, various community groups, nonprofits, faith-based organizations, community leaders, and elected officials will champion legislation, capacity building, and advocacy efforts to uplift and support Latinos across the nation.
NBC NEWS: A Landscape that Generations of Latinos Fought to Preserve is now a National Monument
A historical and ecologically rich swath of land in El Paso was designated a national monument by President Joe Biden on Tuesday.
Snow Survey and Snow School in the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest, Montana
Although I have no background in hydrology or snow science, my internship as a Fish Biologist at the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest is allowing me the opportunity to work alongside experts in other disciplines to broaden my experience. For instance, I was offered the opportunity to go on my first day of fieldwork since starting this position to help with a snow survey conducted by the hydrologists in the Helena office. Because the majority of precipitation in Montana falls in the form of snow, these surveys are useful for predicting the available amount of water for all user groups in the coming year. Snow surveys are used to forecast the coming year’s water supply by measuring the depth and density of snow at numerous standard transects year after year. These forecasts are used by state and federal agencies, as well as the public, to make decisions about water use that affect activities as diverse as fish and wildlife management, agriculture, flood control, hydropower generation, recreation, and municipal water supplies. In short, water is in high demand in the Western US, and information about the coming year’s runoff is useful to many user groups to plan for the coming season. For instance, the location we surveyed is within the Tenmile Creek watershed, which is one of the city of Helena’s main municipal water supplies.
Signing Off, But Not Signing Out
This may be my last update with you all it, but it does not mean the end of the line for my work and project. This fellowship while I wish could last longer, comes to an end in July this year and I can’t help but say this has been both enlightening, informative, and an incredible experience. Just thinking that we were brought almost a year ago and knowing how much I’ve learned, done, and plan to do is both daunting and reassuring. Much of this growth both personally and professionally, have in large part been due to the mentors and managers support during this program. Moving through the first few phases of implementing the Resist-Accept-Direct (RAD) framework and understanding the local species, habitats, and conditions to understanding how changes in the climate regime will have an impact has been a large part of the work, and the informative part. Coalescing all the data and information from the biological and environmental, to the climate data, and management capacity/needs necessary to assess and address vulnerability to climate change has really stretched out the concept of being interdisciplinary. There’s still more work to be done of course, as we are in the midst of phase 3 of implementing the RAD framework for adapting to climate change at our individual stations, and phase 4 is yet to start.
Intersections in Nevada
This past week, I traveled to Reno, Nevada to attend a meeting for the Truckee Meadows Trails Initiative. The coalition associated with this initiative has partnered with the Truckee Meadows Parks Foundation in an effort to increase access to open space and alternative transportation for residents of the Truckee Meadows region. Instead of one project, this initiative seeks to create a cohesive network of trails around the Truckee Meadows by linking multiple trails together, and to main access points in urban areas.
Close Out at Corn Creek Visitor Center (Desert National Wildlife Refuge)
As I look back on the past year of my internship, I cannot help but be overwhelmed with emotions. It feels like I blinked, and it is suddenly coming to an end so quickly. Yet when I reflect on all the experiences and growth it just blows my mind to think about everything I have managed to achieve. I came into this internship with some goals in mind and I feel that I most certainly accomplished them. One of the primary goals for me was to reach out and engage with the Latino community in order to help them be aware of the resources that are available to them, being public lands.
I was able to accomplish this goal through various different avenues to further develop a better connection with public lands. One of the first examples of this was helping out a non-profit named Get Outdoors Nevada. I was able to assist them with field trips hosted at the refuge, after school programs, library programs and community events. What is great about this organization is that they target underrepresented groups which often tended to be Latinos. Although the majority of these programs were in English, I believe having someone that looks like you gives you a feeling of representation. Outside of helping with these different programs, I was able to host some programs in Spanish myself. One of the more basic programs was hosting a Junior Ranger guided hike, this held in Spanish and from my understanding has been one of the few programs that has been held in Spanish. I also developed my very own programs about Bobcats that was also in Spanish as well.
Outside of these programs I was also able to develop content for social media in Spanish and also develop missions for an environmental education app named Agents of Discovery that was also in Spanish. This particular refuge does not have a lot of Spanish signage so I did my best to provide as much content as I could for them. I also hosted the very first Latino Conservation Week event at the refuge, which was also in Spanish. On one my previous posts I went more into depth about the event itself. Over all it was a success and I was very pleased with the turnout considering it was during the hottest time of the year. I could go on about all the rest my experiences but I feel like my previous blogs have been a great buildup for the final and last blog. I cannot thank Hispanic Access Foundation and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service enough for providing me with such a great experience to be able to start my career.
Pastor Armando Vera visits Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge in Texas and shares why it is important to protect our nation's public lands and make your voice heard in conservation.
Pastora Linda Sosa visits Denver's Cheesman Park and shares why it is important to protect our nation's public lands and make your voice heard in conservation.
Pastor Gabriel Araya visits Hemet, California's Simpson Park and shares why it is important to protect our nation's public lands and make your voice heard in conservation.