Author: Danick Toni

Las Tierras de Avalon: Where you can practise what you preach and reap what you sow

It is one of my last days at Las Tierras de Avalon, and it is raining outside. A tropical downpour. The sound of water thumping on the roof enters the room through its many cracks and nooks; thunder breaks outside. But inside, where I am meditating, it is peaceful. I am at peace.

Such peace has been rare during my first few weeks in South America. Backpacking is a logistical exercise in balancing your interests, your time and your budget. So trust yo girl when I say traveling can be ex-haus-ting.

Luckily, travel is also a testimony to “seek and you shall find”.

My search for a little exercise and some tranquility brought me to Las Tierras de Avalon, an oasis of peace hidden in plain sight. (more…)

Carnival in the Americas: Forging Community in Curaçao and Uruguay

This year, I celebrated Carnival again after four years abroad. And what better place to start than my native Curaçao? I arrived just in time to walk in the Gran Marcha (Grand Parade) and Marcha di Despedida (Farewell Parade), both for the first time. Then, three weeks later, I got to sneak a peek of Montevideo’s Carnaval.

The festivities were vastly different in both countries, not surprising considering their different geographies and histories. Yet, what I (re-)discovered in both places was a decades-old tradition, the type that forges community between people irrespective of their race, ancestry or belief. (more…)

Where I’ve been

Ten years ago, when I was twelve, my mother took me backpacking for the first time. My first trip to Ecuador brought me to small Amazonian towns, glacier covered Andes, and vegetarian cuisine. But it was the country’s fascinating history, relaxed pace and cheerful people that really stole my heart. (more…)

Land Rights for All: A Crash Course on the Importance of Land Rights

Secure land rights for local and indigenous communities are being recognized as part of the solution to many development challenges. Many argue that secure land rights are key in fighting climate change, poverty, and gender inequality.

This sounds appealing, but how much do you actually know about land rights? This blog post gives you a quick introduction to the many advantages of secure land rights, as well as the challenges we face in implementing them.  (more…)