WASHINGTON - Communities throughout the country will enjoy and connect with the great outdoors during the 5th annual Latino Conservation Week, which begins July 14 and runs through July 22. With more than 100 events being celebrated nationwide, communities will camp under the stars, go canoeing, take sunset walks, and hike with family among other activities as they engage in the outdoors and learn about stewardship.
"This week is about sharing the Latino community's perspective on the environment like the need to protect our wild and scenic rivers and public lands for future generations," said Maite Arce, President and CEO of Hispanic Access Foundation, which created the Action Week as part of its growing environmental conservation program. "Latino communities are passionate about the outdoors and hold a strong belief that we have a moral obligation to be good stewards."
Latino Conservation Week, an initiative from Hispanic Access Foundation launched in 2014, encourages and supports collaboration between a variety of partners including, individuals, organizations, businesses, churches and government agencies to develop and participate in events and activities that not only connect people with parks, landscapes, rivers, and wildlife, but also teach more about their responsibility as environmental stewards.
This year National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, U.S. Forest Service and National Wildlife Refuge System are joining forces with Hispanic Access Foundation to spotlight events and activities organized by the National Trails System as well as the Wild and Scenic Rivers System during the week, as part of their 50th anniversary celebration. This is an opportunity to enjoy, honor and commemorate our sacred outdoors and environmental legacy. A full listing of events designed to celebrate this milestone is available at www.trails50.org and www.rivers.gov.
"The growth in participation and interest in Latino Conservation Week has been tremendous. What started as 17 events in six states has grown to more than 100 events in as many as 20 states," said Arce. "This is a national collaborative effort with the potential to impact the Latino communities in large urban settings, emerging Latino communities, and in rural communities that aim to celebrate our heritage, culture, spirituality, and stories around our nation's treasured natural places."
Nearly 80 parks, organizations and community groups have joined Latino Conservation Week as partners and sponsors. Our sponsors include George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar™ Education Fund, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, Columbia Sportswear, REI, Adidas and Mountainsmith. Also, various Latino organizations and local groups are adopting Latino Conservation Week as an opportunity to host community events and activities. These include Por la Creacion Faith-based Alliance, Latino Outdoors, Nature for All, COFEM, Protégete, CHISPA, Latin American Youth Center, Empoderate, Homeboy Industries, Frontera Land Alliance, Montgomery Parks, Sierra Club, Los Angeles Audubon Society and Houston Zoo.
The activities span several states and a full listing of events is available at www.LatinoConservationWeek.com. Celebrate online by following #LatinoConservationWeek and #LCW2018 on social media.