Today, the picture of the world can look pretty grim. Clearly things are seriously wrong on just about every front. And when people are stuck spending all their time just surviving, and getting blasted with a bleak picture of humanity and the environment, it is harder to access our innovative, resilient, problem-solving brilliance. But even so, the truth is that for every problem, there are people working to create truly impactful solutions. This week we want to highlight some folks who have inspired us and whose work helps to remind everyone that human innovation and resilience can triumph in the face of huge challenges.
Paul Stamets — Can Mushrooms Help Save the World?
“I love a challenge, and saving the Earth is probably a good one.”
Paul Stamets is an environmentalist’s dream: A mycologist for over 40 years, Paul has discovered that solutions don’t all need to be invented, some are already here in our midst. Take fungi, called mycelium, for example. Paul describes mycelium as the Earth’s Internet system, an interconnected web of fungi that when tapped into, can actually heal itself, much like the human body when it is injured.
Some practical applications?
- Mycofiltration, using mushrooms to facilitate water quality improvements
- Bee Friendly Host Defense, using mushrooms to rehabilitate declining bee colonies through immune support, controlling parasites and detoxification
Tune in for more of Paul’s discoveries: 6 Ways Mushrooms Can Save the World.
Ron Finley — The Guerilla Gardener
“Growing your own food is like printing your own money.”
Meet Ron Finley, the man who has been called the, “Guerilla Gardener of South Central LA.”
When Ron Finley saw a problem with limited access to fresh food in his community he also saw a solution in the form of empty lots.
Ron views urban communities as opportunities, not forgotten wastelands, infusing them with life and hope in the form of edible gardens. Bringing fresh food to low-income urban neighborhoods might not sound all that revolutionary, but to the individuals who had been surviving on cheap, fast, and processed food it has been absolutely life changing. As the people get healthier and feel the power of self-determination, they, and their neighborhoods are beginning to transform in more ways than one.
In his own words “People need to realize how powerful the transformation of soil can be. We’ve gotten so far away from our food source. It’s been hijacked from us. But if you get soil, plant something in it and water it, you can feed yourself. It’s that simple.”
For more information on Ron Finley and his work visit his website.
We have realized in our Thrive Solutions Hub network that virtually every problem we are facing represents a breakdown in the wholeness of natural systems. The solutions involve recognizing, honoring and restoring that wholeness. The opportunities for effective action are endless.
Please share with us other local heroes who have inspired you.