Mayra Hernandez, a Galapagos native who is passionate about the island’s culture and environment, has led an initiative called “More Art, Less Garbage” that aims to make a positive difference. Mayra Hernandez’s initiative is aimed at inspiring the community to keep a cleaner environment. She encourages people to reconsider daily habits that produce waste.
She organized 14 workshops for 250 children on Santa Cruz Island. These workshops taught them how to transform plastic waste into toys and art. Mayra wants to spread “More Art, Less Garbage” to community colleges and schools, so that parents can be reached through their children. She hopes that by doing this, she can raise awareness of the damaging effects of plastic waste on Galapagos.
Mirian Silva, a Galapagos resident, is another WISE grant winner for her “Native Gardens”, which focuses on the conservation of native and endemic plants on Santa Cruz Island. She also aims to protect the iconic flora of Galapagos by reforesting areas in schools. Galapagos Conservancy is supporting projects like Mirian’s in order to ensure the sustainability of Galapagos.
They still face a variety of challenges despite their critical contributions and those of other female conservationists on Galapagos. Women are underrepresented in conservation leadership positions, which limits their ability to shape policy and influence decisions. Women in conservation can also be exposed to gender-based harassment and violence, which creates an unsafe environment.
Galapagos Conservancy’s WISE grant program and the achievements of female leaders on the island serve as powerful reminders of the important role women play in conservation. We can build a sustainable and equitable future for our planet by recognizing the contributions made by women in this area.