Friends of the Everglades 2022 Impact Report

Since our founding by Marjory Stoneman Douglas in 1969, impact and integrity have driven our work at Friends of the Everglades. It’s how we gauge our success as an organization and ensure sound stewardship of your dollars.  We're proud to report Friends of the Everglades continued that tradition this year with the following accomplishments. In 2022, we: Successfully advocated for a new Lake Okeechobee management plan that, for the first time, considers the damaging effects of toxic-algae blooms and recognizes the need to send more clean water south to the Everglades. The new Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual (LOSOM) will be finalized in 2023, and while it’s not a perfect plan, it represents overdue [...]

2022-12-15T09:00:59-05:00December 15th, 2022|All Posts, Friends of the Everglades Statements|

Support Friends of the Everglades on Give Miami Day!

The most impactful online-giving event in South Florida is upon us! Friends of the Everglades is excited to participate once again in Give Miami Day on November 17! Please show your support of our mission to preserve, protect and restore the only Everglades in the world by donating online at: There has never been a more important time to safeguard our fragile Everglades and the surrounding environment. This year, we have: • FOUGHT an 800-acre industrial development on low-lying farmland in Homestead, near Biscayne Bay. • ADVOCATED for a new Lake Okeechobee water-management plan to prioritize public health & fragile ecosystems. • RALLIED to end sugarcane burning & convert to green harvesting. Your Donations Power Our Work! Meet [...]

2022-11-14T08:30:22-05:00November 3rd, 2022|All Posts|

Floridians deserve the Right to Clean Water

Join us in demanding clean and healthy water in Florida! The "why" is simple and obvious. The current system has failed our most basic expectations, risking or harming our most basic needs. Clean water should not be vulnerable to state-sanctioned pollution. To correct this systemic flaw, the Florida Right to Clean Water movement is working to amend the Florida Constitution to include a fundamental right to clean and healthy waters, setting out clear standards, priorities and consequences should a state executive agency violate this right. Floridians must band together to demand responsible governance and accountability when it comes to our most important natural resource. The goal is steep and we need your help. More than 800,000 physically signed petitions must [...]

Clean Water Conversation Rescheduled for October 12

NEW DATE: Our Clean Water Conversation about Florida Bay, originally scheduled for September 28, has been rescheduled for Wednesday, October 12. We have much to discuss, including Hurricane Ian's impact on a lingering algae bloom that had been troubling Florida Bay. Our featured guest list has grown to include Islamorada fishing guide Steve Friedman who serves as Commodore to the Florida Keys Guides Association. He'll join leading fisheries scientist Dr. Jennifer Rehage, full-time Everglades and Biscayne National Park fishing guide Benny Blanco and Friends of the Everglades board member Dave Preston for a live discussion about current conditions in Florida Bay. This live conversation will be streamed directly to our Facebook page and our YouTube channel from 12 - 1 p.m. on Wednesday, [...]

2022-10-05T09:00:59-04:00October 5th, 2022|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations, Florida Bay|

The Last Burn Season video series: “Isn’t our life worth it?”

Sugarcane burning leaves communities vulnerable to air pollution, health risks and economic stress. It’s time to forge a meaningful path to a long-overdue solution. Make this the Last Burn Season. "I don't blame the people for not having hope, but I've got hope for them. I'm standing in the gap for my people."— Kina Phillips Kina Phillips knows what it is to sacrifice. At her home in South Bay, Florida, all she has to do is look past the fence line in her backyard for a reminder of the largest agricultural influence south of Lake Okeechobee, and the risks it poses to residents of the Glades communities. Sugarcane stretches for miles into the horizon. When the cane is burned [...]

Everglades Illustrated: Lake O levels and the “water shortage management band”

    It’s been a relatively dry summer. As of September 11, Lake Okeechobee stood at 12.55 feet. That’s about 2 feet lower than this time last year. Last week, the lake officially entered what’s known as the “water shortage management band” — a point where water managers can implement water restrictions if necessary and South Florida Water Management District steps in to determine release volumes from Lake O. But let’s not sound the drought alarm bells just yet. Typically the biggest concern during rainy season is that Lake O will rise too fast, threatening the integrity of the Herbert Hoover Dike and triggering damaging discharges to the northern estuaries — but that has not been the case this summer. [...]

2022-09-14T16:43:47-04:00September 13th, 2022|All Posts, Everglades Illustrated, Lake Okeechobee, LOSOM|

Presenting the Maggy Hurchalla Opportunity Fund

It’s hard to believe six months have passed since we said goodbye to Everglades hero Margaret Reno Hurchalla. Not a day goes by that we don’t remember the immense contributions and sacrifices she made in Florida for our communities and environment. As difficult as it was to think of a world without Maggy’s perseverance and inspiration, you helped us realize that her triumphant spirit lives on through Everglades advocacy and supporters. Hundreds of Maggy Hurchalla’s friends and loved ones contributed more than $25,000 cumulatively to Friends of the Everglades in the wake of her passing. Now, Friends of the Everglades is honored to announce the creation of The Maggy Hurchalla Opportunity Fund, seeded by your heartfelt contributions. Your gifts [...]

VIDEO: Corps demonstrates that transparency is the best policy in shaping LOSOM

Friends of the Everglades Executive Director Eve Samples (left) and Policy Director Gil Smart (right) converse with Tim Gysan and Col. James Booth of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Thursday, Aug. 18, 2022, during a Clean Water Conversation at the Friends of the Everglades offices in Sewall’s Point. For more than three years, Friends of the Everglades has advocated for a better Lake Okeechobee management plan — one that prioritizes public health and prevents toxic-algae crises like we've seen in years prior. Today we had a chance to speak candidly with Army Corps leaders about the specifics of the new Lake Okeechobee System Operating Manual (LOSOM) that will govern the way water moves in and [...]

2022-08-18T16:52:09-04:00August 18th, 2022|All Posts, Clean Water Conversations, LOSOM|

NEW SHOP: Raise a glass to the River of Grass!

Introducing the Friends of the Everglades Shop! Friends of the Everglades founder Marjory Stoneman Douglas was famous for her persistence. In her work to preserve and protect America's Everglades, moments of discouragement and disappointment only seemed to make her more sure of the need to galvanize the next fight. One of Marjory's quotes perfectly illuminates her resolve — so, we've decided to memorialize it on some everyday items to share her sense of strength and purpose in the face of adversity. This year, on the 75th anniversary of Everglades National Park and Marjory's seminal book, "The Everglades: River of Grass," consider supporting our work to preserve Marjory's legacy by purchasing one of our debut shop items. Marjory Stoneman Douglas [...]

2022-09-14T16:45:01-04:00August 15th, 2022|All Posts, Friends of the Everglades SHOP|

The Last Burn Season Video Series: A love letter to the people of Belle Glade

Sugarcane burning leaves communities vulnerable to air pollution, health risks and economic stress. It’s time to forge a meaningful path to a long-overdue solution. Make this the Last Burn Season. “When people come to Belle Glade they don’t fall in love with anything else first, but the people.” — Robert Mitchell Robert Mitchell knows that the true soul of Belle Glade is in the people who live there. From an empty plot of land where his late grandmother once owned a beloved restaurant, Essie Mae’s Cafe, he makes a firm declaration: “We have a saying here in Belle Glade that her soil is her fortune. I’m here to tell you that her soil AND her people are her fortune.” [...]


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