Today on Giving Tuesday I want talk about the Agriculture and Environmental issues that are near and dear to my heart. Now that I have this Art Card & Print business launched I am very happy to dedicate 10% of all profits to AGRONAT LLC - A SMALL FARM in SAN LORENZO.
This small farm was started by a couple of young people after Hurricane Maria leveled the island destroying all the agriculture 5 years ago. I have known these young adults since I was a youth leader more than 20 years ago. Carlos and Maria are a young family with a 4-year old daughter working the land with their team in the area of San Lorenzo. The name of their farm is AgroNat, LLC.
FIVE YEARS AFTER HURRICANE MARIA, (Sept 18, 2022) HURRICANE FIONA BLEW IN AND DAMAGED the CROPS of LOCAL PUERTO RICAN FARMERS AND I WANT TO HELP THEM. They have been busy re-terracing the land and replanting the row crops and the plantain that were knocked over by the winds, and flooded by the torrential rains. They have received donations of labor and are working with agricultural grants available for farmers who suffered after Fiona. However, my heart is for them and all the young entrepreneurs who came back to the land after Hurricane Maria to build a new agricultural foundation that had been dwindling.
After Maria, we realized Puerto Rico imports 85 percent of its food and 64% from the United States, and because the ports were shut down, the supermarkets quickly sold out of food. You might remember photos of bare shelves filling Facebook and Instagram. Puerto Ricans suffered. Yes, we came together we got through, (some of you helped me help others in many ways through NEIGHBORS HELPING NEIGHBORS grassroots effort, more about in another blog) but lessons were learned.
Many people decided to do something about this non-sustainable travesty. It was mostly young people who went back to their roots and started small farms in the rich fertile but rough jungle-like land that covers this beautiful island.
A farmer's life is not easy with all the environmental issues and business anxieties of selling their produce, however these entrepreneurial young people have endured.
Again, I am honored to champion the efforts of all the small farms who combat the island’s Food Security Issues, by supporting AgroNat through my art. Thanks for joining with me supporting the Small Farms of Puerto Rico.
Beyond the hurricane damage and ongoing rains the small farms struggle year round and our consistent support will at the least encourage them and help them to realize they are not alone. There are people that care about what they are doing to help galvanize the agricultural development on this small island. Thank you for helping give back.
Every card you buy you can know that you are sending some love our way. Helping me exist artist as a full time artist and supporting a small farm doing their part to fight back against the food insecurity here on this beautiful Island.
Many of you know of Isabel, we called her Abuelita, who I lived with for 30 years her in Puerto Rico. She was born in Ponce and served as a lifelong nurse for 70 years. She was our angel. She passed on to glory a couple years ago at 104 years young. When we traveled around the island she would always declare that “more crops should be grown” all over the hillsides. She noticed the decline in agriculture and was very vocal about it. I think she would be happy to hear about the new small farmers and that I am doing at least something to support them.
Thanks for your kindness in spending love to others when you buy a card and send it to someone with a special word or message.
“In a World Where You Can Be Anything Be Kind”
Giving Tuesday is a day that encourages people to give back in whatever ways they can. This is my way.
Remember: We're on a mission to make others smile, inside and out. We create art cards and prints aimed to brighten your day and those you send them to. Learn more about our story. Spreading kindness, one card at a time.
Make someone smile today!
NEXT BLOG: More about how this Art Card & Print business, part of my lifelong creativity journey, is taking several steps to be a more sustainable and environmentally conscious business.