Americas for Conservation + the Arts and CREA Results
2018 Innovative EE Program Award Recipient
The Promotores Verdes (PV) program engages low-income Latino families in culturally significant, fun filled outdoor experiences on public lands, growing their environmental literacy and advocacy. Most of PV families live in highly polluted neighborhoods and food desserts. The program educates about outdoor etiquette, connects public health to tree- and ecological health, highlights health benefits of nature, engages families in citizen science and stewardship activities. It immerses families in nature and EE activities, and with a ripple effect strengthens social cohesion, builds community, fosters stakeholders and grows advocates for conservation and civic engagement.
Families learn how their personal health depends on the environment. Family members become bilingual facilitators for art and hands-on STEM workshops that include health education. The curriculum builds on the elements of air (pollution, second-hand smoke), soil (composting, gardening, permaculture, pollinators and nutrition), water (water cycle, consumption, quality, climate change) and fire (energy literacy, renewable energy, wildfire prevention). All outdoor events include restorative justice, a blessing of the public land site by a First Nation elder who connects his/ her people’s local history to culture, leading into the request to continue caring for the land for future generations.
Promotore Verdes is also home of Bio blitz events (with families and title 1 schools) and the United Cultures for Arts and Nature (U-CAN) youth leadership camp. Bio Blitz and U-CAN programs include and benefit PV families and establish a pipeline for young leaders in conservation, preparing the next generation for the 21st century and beyond.