Diversity matters. Inclusion is essential. Everyone's voice counts. This page spotlights local stakeholders who create and maintain community.
Get to know the faces who create and sustain community and what clean water means to them.
"Having clean water and healthy ecosystems means that we can continue to live and thrive on the Gulf Coast of Florida for generations to come. My hope is that I can teach my children to respect our waters and ecosystem to allow future generations the same privilege that we’ve had."
“Being born in Florida, the water is in my blood. It’s always been there. On my best days and my worst. It offers a rare chance to reconnect with a life we’ve left behind and to return to the beauty of nature.”
"Water is life. Whether it’s salt, brackish, or fresh, our lives are dependent on keeping it clean and protecting the fragile ecosystems they support. We all have to protect our water and native fish by doing our part. Whether it’s changing how we fertilize our yards or being active and hunting/fishing out invasive species, It’s a trickle down effect. I’ve chosen to stay in Florida because of our diverse waterways, and find it healing to be out and enjoy them. We have to do our part to heal them as well."
"As a surfer, nature photographer and naturalist, seeing our oceans and waterways stay healthy and thriving is very important to me. Marine environments are so amazing and essential to our lives it's paramount that everyone be conscious of how the way you live affects our the planets water. Do your part, research product's that you use to see if they contain harmful ingredients that will end up in the ocean, even small things like picking up a couple peices of trash when you're at the beach can contribute, if everyone shares that mindset we can continue to enjoy healthy fresh and saltwater environments and preserve them for future generations."
"These beaches are a part of my fabric. They are where i have had some of my favorite times, where i have come to unwind, and contemplate some of my biggest life choices. Where i have laid under the stars and fallen in love. The feeling of sand under my feet, witnessing all the wildlife, and smelling that salty air are some of the most comforting feelings in the world to me. It is instant peace. Watching what we are doing to our oceans is like watching a part of my family slowly die, and i am in a complete state of mourning. If the oceans die we die. It is up to us to save them and ourselves! It’s now or never."
"Growing up in Southwest Florida, our beaches will always hold a special place in my heart. I want our children to enjoy the same crystal clear waters and white sand beaches that I did as a child. With that comes the importance of keeping our waters clean and fighting for the solution."
Im from FMB and that experience of being outside, on the beach, in the water, watching the animals is something I'm forever grateful for. I want my children to be able to experience the same things! It hurts my heart to have to think about my children's safety prior to being able to enjoy what should be natural and un
Ashley is a Florida Native raised near the waters of Punta Rassa.
Johanna grew up loving the ocean and now brings her daughters to the beach every chance she gets!
"As a wife of a fishing guide, and avid angler, my life depends on clean water and sustainable fisheries. I want our children to enjoy Southwest Florida’s fishing as much as I have. My grandmother taught me that the ocean heals everything, so I hope to help educate our future generations on how to always improve our water quality. Our ecosystem needs us to care, be involved, and fight for what we love."
Below are community members who bridge the nature-culture connection through various art forms.
Occupation: Massage Therapist and Yoga Coach
"Yoga is the yoking of the mind, body and breath. It is connecting back to our nature, with nature. It can open ones eyes to a more vibrant life and connection with nature as it brings us back to wholeness, peacefulness and source."
Occupation: Clothing Designer
"I’ve always grown up around or on the water living on the coast or on a boat you don’t realize it until you’re away from the water how much you’re drawn to it. The water for us is our equalizer. The ocean is a calming balance from the hustle and bustle of normal life". Contact Bryan@ flaoriginal.com
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