☀ Preserving Blue Crabs in Ecuador

AND Prison Program Saving Endangered Butterfly

Inhale the present, exhale the past.

Now, let your breath guide you back to the present moment, where peace and mindfulness reside.

Thank you for reading today’s edition of Grateful Gazette 😌

Here’s what to know for Tuesday:

  • Esmeraldan women are fighting to preserve their blue crab culture

  • City of Tucson introduces a shower trailer program

  • A prison program is helping to save an endangered butterfly


In the heart of Ecuador's emerald coast lies a treasure more valuable than gold to the Afro-descendant Esmeraldans: the beloved blue crab.

But it's not just about the delicious crustacean; it's about culture, community, and a lot of girl power.

Back in the day, Amada Cortez Caicedo would explore the mangrove forests with her sisters.

They collected shells and snails like it was the ultimate adventure. It was about connecting with nature, taking in the sights, and maybe finding a hidden gem or two.

For folks like Cortez, the mangroves aren't just pretty plants. They're the backbone of a community, providing a home for the blue crabs and offering wisdom.

Unfortunately, paradise isn't all sunshine and rainbows. 

Deforestation and shrimp farms are hurting the mangroves. And when they suffer, we all suffer – especially those adorable blue crabs.

But don't worry! Our heroines aren't giving up without a fight. Led by Amada Cortez Caicedo, these amazing women are joining forces to protect their mangrove home and its crabby inhabitants.

Luna Creciente and the Union of Peasant Organizations of Esmeraldas of Ecuador (UOCE) enforce bans on crab harvesting. These folks are planting mangroves like there's no tomorrow, giving those crabs a fighting chance.

They're not just saving crabs; they're saving recipes, too.

Thanks to Slow Food International, the Esmeraldas blue crab is listed among the world's culinary wonders.

Esmeraldan women aren't just cooking up a storm; they're cooking up opportunities, too. With projects aimed at teaching skills and promoting eco-tourism, they're turning the tide.

In a world full of challenges, they show us that a little love, determination, and maybe a pinch of salt can make a big difference.

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🚿 City of Tucson offers free showers for the unsheltered community

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📸 Ghana’s deaf students discover and find their voice through photography

🐦 Rare helmetshrike spotted after two decades

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Scientists, volunteers, and incarcerated women team up to save a struggling butterfly species.

Heather leads the charge at Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women. She's caring for thousands of Taylor's checkerspot butterflies with a smile brighter than the sun.

But these butterflies aren't just any winged critters.

They're facing extinction faster than you can say "caterpillar." With habitats disappearing and bugs vanishing, our ecosystem's in trouble.

But, don’t worry. 

Our butterfly heroes are here to save the day. From Washington State to British Columbia, these amazing insects are making a comeback, thanks to people like Mary Linders and Peter Karsten.

It's a true underdog story, with butterflies as the unlikely heroes.

Even the smallest creatures can make a big difference. And when we work together, anything is possible.

Looking for some fun and action this weekend?

Po, everyone's favorite panda, is stepping up to become the Spiritual Leader of the Valley of Peace.

He's gotta find and train a new Dragon Warrior while battling a wicked sorceress who's bringing back all the baddies Po has ever defeated.

Get ready for some epic kung fu showdowns and hilarious panda antics!

- Thank you for reading Grateful Gazette. Remember to breathe deeply to bring your mind back to your body 💜

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