East Yard Summer Water Tours
Writen by Janet Valenzuela
What an honor and privilege it has been to work with East Yard members on this Water Tour series for the month of August. This month we visited Dominguez Gap Wetlands in Long Beach, Ford Park in Bell Gardens, Riverfront Park in Maywood, Roosevelt Park in Florence-Firestone, and San Gabriel River Basin in Pico Rivera. The goal and intent of this series are to learn more about water access and sustainability in our communities. At the same time, this will be a great opportunity to envision and imagine the possibilities of what water capture and filtration can look like in our hoods. The tours are intended for EYCEJ members and families to learn and hear about water infrastructure in our communities and how these projects are part of addressing water conservation and contamination.
At each location, members toured the site and learned about the benefits of water capture systems that reduce runoff and mitigate water toxins from the Lower Los Angeles River Basin. It was a great way to highlight how much we have learned about storm water regulation and water conservation. The program left us thinking how we can act as water stewards and allies to our Tongva and Indigenous diaspora community who continue to model traditional ecological knowledge and practices that remind us that water has memory and water is sacred.
A big thank you goes out to Council for Watershed Health, Sacred Places Institute, Tree People, Bell Garden Public Works (Grissel and Desi) and L.A. County Public Works (Andrew) and Miguel Ramos (East LA member) leading us in a bike ride to the basin and Marlene (East LA member) for leading a Full Moon Ceremony.
We’d also like to take a moment and acknowledge the natural disasters impacting vulnerable families. Our hearts go out to the families impacted by the flooding, wildfires, and drought disasters everywhere.