A Rocha’s Operation Wild program recently hosted adults living with disabilities at Cedar Haven for a spring-themed education day. The eager participants learned about tree identification, listened to the calls of local birds, and even partook in some old fashioned maple syrup making.
After harvesting maple sap, we took time to consider the gift that the land had given us. The maples gave us sap for sweet syrup, and in turn we happily planted maple seeds as a way of saying thanks. This act teaches us of the principle of reciprocity, that all relationships with the land require a rhythm of give and take. It high- lights the fact that knowledge we have been equipped with to care for our shared home is meant to be shared with others and put into practice.
At the end of the day, we gathered around the campfire to enjoy the first batch of maple syrup and drink cedar tea. We shared stories of new lessons learned, of our gratitude for maple trees, and for ways we can practice reciprocity with creation. What a sign of hope when participants no matter what their background or challenges form a relationship with creation and feel equipped to care for it.