News Coverage

19 July 2016

PUBLIC NEWS SERVICE Latino Conservation Week Celebrations Ongoing in Nevada

Category: News Coverage

This week is Latino Conservation Week, and local groups are putting on events to draw more people to the outdoors. The Hispanic Access Foundation, the Sierra Club, Conservation Land Foundation and Chispa are helping organize the event in Nevada. 

The groups will host a visit to Gold Butte on Wednesday and on Thursday children from the Cambridge Community Center will go to the Desert National Wildlife Refuge. On Saturday there will be a float trip at Clark County Wetlands Park. Christian Gerlach with the Toiyabe Chapter of the Sierra Club is leading two of the trips.

"For way too long the environmental movement has not been diverse,” Gerlach said. "The environment belongs to absolutely every single human being. Latino Conservation Week is the platform to engage Latino youth in conservation."

This is the third year Latino Conservation Week has been celebrated nationally. This year there are events in 19 states plus Washington, D.C., with more than 100 partner groups working with parks to inspire children to become environmental stewards.

On Saturday, teenagers from the Centro de Adoracion Familiar, part of a Las Vegas-area church, will be pulling invasive tamarisk trees from Lake Mead National Recreation Area and then going on a float trip in Black Canyon. Church organizer Cristina Espinosa said the land is part of Nevada's cultural heritage.

"It's important to have everybody go out the park, each new generation to go out in nature,” Espinosa said. "God has created everything and I think it's really important for us to take care of it."

Chelsea Kennedy with the Lake Mead National Recreation Area said the park is always looking to expose more people to the beauty of the desert.

"Las Vegas has a huge Latino community. And it's probably one of our most underserved communities. And a lot have never been out here,” Kennedy said. "A lot of it is transportation issues. So by doing this we're providing them the transportation and the opportunity to get out and actually see the areas."

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