With bees, life blooms in the mountains 

Native bee collecting nectar in the mountain. Photo credit: Ysa Calderón.

Living in harmony with nature – is sacred to Indigenous Peoples, ancestors, and elders, and it can become a reality by listening to and learning from every species of plants and animals that inhabits it. Native bees, carrying the memory of the community in their wings and hives, remind us of how we once lived connected to nature, as part of it. 

Ysa Calderón with “”great grandfather” Higuerón. Photo credit: Ysa Calderón.

In my restoration process, the first challenge I faced was returning to the countryside to work for and with nature through my venture, Sumak Kawsay. Another has been bringing the message of nature to people in the city and the community at large, as it seems we have forgotten how to listen to it, sustain it, understand it, and care for it. 

Today, I am grateful for the journey I have undertaken and everything I have learned in the mountains of the Salas district, Lambayeque province, in northern Peru. It makes me happy to share my experience with the community! 

Working hand in hand with nature. Photo credit: Ysa Calderón.

Having the opportunity to work feeling and being part of nature is a gift I thank my ancestors for. They maintain their deep connection with nature and demonstrate it, such as every time they thank nature for the healthy food it provides us, nourishing us and improving our health. 

Raw multifloral mountain honey – nature’s medicine. Photo credit: Ysa Calderón.

I am therefore proud to produce and market honey from stingless native bees and from Apis mellifera bees, which we handle responsibly, respecting their cycles. They allow us to provide health through their honey, as it contains the essence of plants and of all nature in the mountain. 

Part of what Sumak Kawsay obtains from the sale of honey is used to continue our work of ecosystem restoration. For example, we are reforesting with local plants to conserve native bees and other pollinators. 

The honey from bees and the panela (block of unrefined whole cane sugar) we produce are natural treasures that sweeten life and conserve nature. 

Ysa preparing seedlings in the mountain nursery. Photo credit: Ysa Calderón.

In the mountains, we work as a community, which fills us with happiness. Every moment in contact with the soil is pure medicine. 

The trees we plant will be immense one day and provide shade, happiness, and food for the community and all the species living in it. 

Ysa with the seedlings that are sprouting in the nursery. Photo credit: Ysa Calderón.

Let’s restore the mountain together and save pollinators! 

Buzzz 🐝 

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Supporting partners 2023

Supporting partners

The Restoration Stewards program provides funding, mentorship and training to deepen the impact of youth-led restoration projects. The year-long program is run by the Youth in Landscapes Initiative (YIL) and the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) under the banner of Generation Restoration to support and highlight the work of eight young restoration practitioners and their teams in 2023.

During the program, the Restoration Stewards and their teams are  supported to further develop their project and serve as ambassadors at both global and local levels. Globally, the Restoration Stewards share their journeys in a series of vlogs and blogs documenting their stories of inspiration and challenges and participate in different international events to showcase their work. Locally, they are sparking a restoration movement, mobilizing local communities and creating pathways to connect, share, learn, and act for livelihoods and landscapes.