Why the miracle forest of Gaviotas gives us a reason for hope
In 2010, my husband, Steve, traveled to Colombia to visit the sustainable community of Gaviotas and to ask for founder Professor Lugari's blessing for my picture book telling their story. Although my book isn't out yet, Gaviotas is such a potent example of why we should continue to do our best and not give up hope, no matter how challenging our times, that I want to share a little bit about it here.
Paolo Lugari's goal was to found a community where people could live a sustainable lifestyle. He chose the difficult land of the eastern savannas because he believed that, with the world's growing population, people would need to learn to live in the less hospitable places.
At first they couldn't get anything to grow. But then, they discovered that, if they applied a special fungi to the roots, Tropical Caribbean Pines, would grow in the acidic soil.
That's when the miracle happened. Shaded beneath the pines, rain forest, not seen in that area for thousands of years, spontaneously regenerated, bringing back over 260 species, including the Wooley Monkey, Capybaras and Tanager pictured below.
The Miracle Forest of Gaviotas is a living example of how, when we humans do our best to live in harmony with nature, the Earth is capable of responding with miracles beyond our wildest imaginings!