Building alliances – Mariposas de Mindo
On this occasion we visited an enterprise in Mindo, which is part of our Corporate Sponsorship program. Upon entering the place we were greeted with a big smile by Johana Gomez, manager of Mariposas de Mindo, who told us a little about the company.
Mariposas de Mindo is a family business that has been in operation for approximately 25 years. It began with Mrs. Rosa Ordoñez and Alberto Gómez de la Torre, who have directed the breeding of butterflies for exhibition, reproduction and conservation of the species in the cloud forest of Mindo. Currently their sons Johana, Carlos and Fernando are in charge of the administration of the enterprise.
Mariposas de Mindo was initially only a private hatchery, dedicated to the export of butterflies. But then the idea arose to open its doors to the public and especially to SALEM.
“I remember that with my best friend and I met Jonás, he once said that we could enter the waterfalls as volunteers and we wouldn’t have to pay; then our prank was to go up to the waterfalls and say that we were SALEM volunteers, to enter for free. Then we started to receive children from SALEM, because it is very important for them to know what is happening in their town, what are the things that are happening and what we do in our conservation project, that is why my parents said yes, of course, children can come to see the butterfly cycle. It’s like a Natural Science class, in a big way, because it’s all live“
Mariposas de Mindo is a company that has been able to overcome many of the problems that have arisen over the years. “There are always problems, we have lived through the pandemic, we lived through the eruption of Pichincha with the fall of the ashes on the plastic. When there was a hurricane or whirlwind, a lot of trees fell in the greenhouse. The climate changes, now we have extreme rain, we are afraid of the trees falling down. So, every day there is a little problem.
Over the years the project has been gaining strength, it would no longer be just a hatchery, but a research center for the butterflies of Mindo; the species that exist, those that have been lost and those that are in danger of extinction. After that, the restaurant project was created and now they also have a project of handicrafts that are made by themselves. All those who are part of this project have been willing to support the community. They have received our children very kindly and have taught them about conservation.
“The fact that there are no butterflies means that the forest is sick, that some plant is missing, that life is missing, that anything is missing. Because insects are the first to disappear when the forest is not healthy.” (Johana)
Our great SALEM Family is grateful to Mariposas de Mindo, for committing to the care, help and defense of those who need it most.
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