With approximately 60 people in attendance, the Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF) officially launched the first "Nuestras Raíces" (Our Roots) cookbook of traditional dishes from Isabela Island. The event was attended by CDF Executive Director Rakan Zahawi, International Affairs Coordinator Johanna Carrión, Isabela Mayor Bolívar Tupiza, local authorities, the families who created the cookbook, students, and community members.
The Auditorium of the Historias Vivas Theater in Puerto Villamil, was the venue for the launching of this recipe book, whose authors are high school students of the Centro Educativo Fiscomisional Inmaculada Stella Maris (CEFISM) and their families.


"The idea is to focus on a more sustainable Galapagos, working with our available, local products," emphasized Rakan Zahawi.

Rakan Zahawi, Executive Director Charles Darwin Foundation. Photo by: Juan Manuel García, CDF
Rakan Zahawi, Executive Director Charles Darwin Foundation. Photo by: Juan Manuel García, CDF


The book is made up of 12 recipes, divided into appetizers, main courses, and desserts prepared by Isabela families who happily thanked CDF for its support. "Those who have tasted my dishes know that I love cooking and have learned it since I was a child; the dishes we prepare with our family have local products that we must take advantage of," concluded Rosa Solórzano, author of one of the recipes.

Ernesto Bustamante, Isabela Liaison Coordinator of the Charles Darwin Foundation. Photo by: Juan Manuel García, CDF
Ernesto Bustamante, Isabela Liaison Coordinator of the Charles Darwin Foundation. Photo by: Juan Manuel García, CDF


Ernesto Bustamante, CDF Isabela Liaison Coordinator, explained that behind the final recipe book was hard work and teamwork to achieve the proposed objective. "The idea for the recipe book was born in 2019 when we culminated the sustainable community project. Today I am happy to officially present this recipe book. This book is for the community of Isabela, Galapagos and for anyone who wants to venture a little with the history and culture behind the recipes of Isabela." He commented.

At the end of the event, the families that are part of the recipe book received a certificate of participation and the physical book as a thank you for the gastronomic and cultural contribution made through this initiative. Joshua Rodríguez, recipe author indicated "I am happy that I was taken into account for this project".

Joshua Rodríguez, student of the Centro Educativo Fiscomisional Inmaculada Stella Maris and author of one of the recipes. Photo: Juan Manuel García, CDF
Joshua Rodríguez, student of the Centro Educativo Fiscomisional Inmaculada Stella Maris and author of one of the recipes. Photo: Juan Manuel García, CDF
Open House 2021

The Charles Darwin Foundation's (CDF) 62nd anniversary Open House was a total success. Approximately 500 people visited the Research Station's facilities to learn more about the ongoing projects that contribute to the Galapagos conservation.

Explanation of the Marine Invasive Species Program. Photo: Juan Manuel García, CDF
Explanation of the Marine Invasive Species Program. Photo: Juan Manuel García, CDF


Between games and dynamic explanations, visitors learned about our scientific research in both marine and terrestrial spheres.

Our scientists shared their knowledge with visitors. Photo: Juan Manuel García, CDF.
Our scientists shared their knowledge with visitors. Photo: Juan Manuel García, CDF.


The tour of the CDRS was also shared virtually through Facebook live to reach each of our followers who for some reason could not visit us in person.


Visitors were pleased with the work that CDF has been carrying out for more than 62 years, with a mission to provide knowledge and support through scientific research and complementary actions to ensure the conservation of the environment and biodiversity of the Galapagos Archipelago.

In addition to public institutions, tourists and the community also visited the Open House some local schools and colleges. Photo: Johanna Villacís.
In addition to public institutions, tourists and the community also visited the Open House some local schools and colleges. Photo: Johanna Villacís.

Relive the best moments of the Open House here

Oceans are key providers of ecosystem services (ES), provisioning environmental goods at global scale that underpin the livelihoods and wellbeing of entire populations. These ES range from providing food and raw materials, such as fish, sand, and rocks, to regulating vital biological and environmental processes like fostering life cycle of marine species, giving coastal protection, purifying water, and stabilizing the world’s climate. ES also include recreational, cultural and spiritual aspects.
Although nature’s contributions to human welfare are incredibly valuable, anthropogenic pressures over ecosystems are weakening nature’s ability and quality at providing the flow of ecosystem services. This situation, in fact, threatens Earth´s life support system, and jeopardizes livelihoods and wellbeing of current and future generations. The vastness and scope of ocean ecosystems also enable their supply of global environmental goods and services which become threatened by climate change, overexploitation of marine resources, pollution, and habitat loss. In this regard, understanding how losses of valuable ES arise, and hinder the prosperity of communities becomes crucial to reflect as society on the current endless growth economic model that compromise those ES and to inform to policymakers on the adoption of measures to safeguard high-value marine habitats. Economics poses some interesting answers to these questions. As nature’s goods and services are usually public goods there are not market prices for them, a situation that results in inefficient use of the ecosystems providing these goods and services which ultimately results in their destruction. Valuing ecosystem services becomes an important tool to this concern, since the production of relevant information makes possible for decision- and policy-makers to also look at economic, social and human values of marine ecosystems, and their fundamental contribution at maintaining the welfare of the human communities which depend upon them.

 The ecosystem services of the Galapagos Marine Reserve include the provision of food, such as fish, as well as the provision of other natural resources. Photo by: Juan Manuel García, CDF.
The ecosystem services of the Galapagos Marine Reserve include the provision of food, such as fish, as well as the provision of other natural resources. Photo by: Juan Manuel García, CDF.

The Galapagos archipelago, with its numerous ecosystems and unique biodiversity, is an ideal place where to observe the complex interactions between social and natural systems. Galapagos clearly illustrates how a nature-based driven economy which has constituted the foundation of welfare and prosperity of local, national and global communities faces huge challenges due to unexpected events that compromise its long-term viability. The Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF) has engaged in applied research, looking at measuring and valuing indispensable ecosystem services in the Galapagos Marine Reserve (GMR). This process has entailed fostering and promoting interdisciplinary research, that has for example measured the economic contribution of Galapagos mangroves to mitigate CO2 emissions. Likewise, we have built experimental ecosystem accounting tools for the local artisanal fisheries, where policymakers can track how much income and jobs depend on each ecosystem and key species.

An interdisciplinary research of the FCD measured the economic contribution of Galapagos mangroves to mitigate CO2 emissions. Photo by: Nicolás Moity, CDF.
An interdisciplinary research of the FCD measured the economic contribution of Galapagos mangroves to mitigate CO2 emissions. Photo by: Nicolás Moity, CDF.

Currently, hand in hand with Heriot-Watt University, and with generous funding of the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) of the UK’s Research and Innovation (UKRI), the CDF has been designing and carrying out fundamental valuation studies for the GMR. Specifically, to value the economic impact of policies designed to protect the provision of services from essential marine ecosystems. These are important inputs for the Galapagos National Park Directorate, to design and apply evidence-based policies for the governance, conservation and management of these ecosystems. Moreover, economic valuation research also aims to highlight the ocean’s contribution to human welfare, and the critical relevance of interdisciplinary research and information-based policies to build a strong regulatory framework ensuring conservation of our oceans.


Please contribute to this research by answering the following questionnaire. It takes less than 10 minutes. Thanks!
Click HERE to participate

Pink iguana

The Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF) is preparing to welcome the Galapagos community to its 2021 Open House to commemorate our 62 years of institutional life. The Open House will have limited capacity and will be in compliance with all the biosecurity measures that we must still maintain. The projects being carried out at the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS) will be presented at this event that will take place on July 27th at 8:00 AM. The objective is to create a space for interaction with the community to share our research results and scientific knowledge in a friendly and fun environment.

CDF Open House 2021
CDF Open House 2021


To attend the CDF Open House this year, you must register in advance using the following form: https://bit.ly/RegistroFCD. You must mark the time you would like to visit us and indicate the number of people who will be visiting.


We will have two visiting circuits, both including terrestrial and marine projects, where you will learn about science and applied research for the conservation of the Galapagos Islands. The displayed research projects will include:


The presentations will be given by the scientists that work on each project. At the end of the tour, visitors will be invited to the gifts tent , where, through interactive games, they will be able to win different prizes.

 

Circuit for the Open House 2021
Circuit for the Open House 2021


Members of the Shark-Ambassadors Science Club, which forms part of our Education and Community Outreach (ECO) Program, will also participate in the Open House with an interactive and educational stand.


From 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM, we will welcome each and every person who has registered through the https://bit.ly/RegistroFCD. This way we can guarantee that the activity will be carried out in a safe manner, without the crowds and under strict biosecurity protocols.


We will be waiting for you!

The ‘Charles Darwin Foundation for the Galapagos Islands’, in French ‘Fondacion Charles Darwin  pour les Iles Galapagos’, Association Internationale sans but lucrative (AISBL), has its registered office at Avenue Louise 54, 1050 Brussels, Belgium. Trade Registry # 0409.359.103

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