Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
Dialogue & Deliberation Fellowship
Sam Tayag brings their experience as a nurse, grassroots environmental justice advocate, artist, and caregiver—along with their family’s Indigenous cultural teachings—to their role as a Community Science Coordinator at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.
They are interested in understanding and supporting human-nature relationships, particularly for the most systemically marginalized community members and the wildlife most impacted by human activity.
Nature for All is a community-based organization working in the Los Angeles-San Gabriel Valley area to support and train organizers from systematically marginalized communities through their Leadership Academy. Their events and programs support Angelinos’ connection to nature and promote awareness and action on policies that have an impact on human and ecological health.
Nature for All and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County examined ways that green spaces can be made more accessible to diverse communities to improve human and environmental health. A team of Angelinos from diverse backgrounds joined environmental justice advocates, artists, and natural science researchers for a structured conversation and art creation event exploring equitable green space for life in Los Angeles.
The participants represented park-poor and underserved communities in Los Angeles belonging to the at-risk demographics outlined in a statewide study. Their discussion unearthed the community priorities of being able to gather, safety and accessibility, and healing land, community, and self. An interactive pop-up gallery exhibit featuring the art and insight from the first event will be created and open to the public at the Natural History Museum and other community locations to further engage the public and encourage additional contributions to the topic of equitable access to green space.
From this series of events, a learning-sharing document will be created and distributed to professional networks and made publicly available to help guide research, programming, activism, and outreach around community priorities. This document will include an action plan for getting involved with the work of community partners and other institutions addressing the priorities discussed at the event and serve as a resource for community collaboration around policy and direct action.