INTRODUCING MANU ROSA
MZ. MAY 2021
Art by Summer, Sacred Fox Art
First, a little bit about Mz. Manu Rosa
Originally from Medellin, Colombia, Manu Rosa (Manuela Torres) migrated to the United States in 2003. She currently resides in Miami although she is honing in on her acting career, and so has been living in New York seasonally since 2018 to work in the industry as an actress. Manu Rosa has worked on shows such as: Law And Order, SVU, The Deuce, The Good Fight, Madam Secretary and landed her first speaking role in a series called La Suerte De Loli on Telemundo. As Multi-talented and while in Miami, she works as a massage therapist, aesthetician, makeup artist, and plans on attending acupuncture school. She can be found on Instagram @manuchromatik
"I'm passionate about performance arts - acting, singing, dancing, and pretty much any other art form that crosses my path. With the entertainment industry laying low amdist the continuing chaos from 2020, I'm finding new ways to channel my creativity." - Manu Rosa
We want to thank you for the incredible photosubmissions. They are so "Permaculture Pinup". Please tell us more about this shoot and the photographer you collaborated with.
The photographer is Regina Walker. She is my partner’s mom! She lives in Pompano Beach, Florida. The location is a food forest in her backyard. It’s a little slice of urban permaculture. She and her partner have an incredible variety of medicinal herbs, exotic fruits and vegetables. It’s hard to keep track of all the things there are back there. It’s amazing! We had such a good time creating this shoot.
When did you first realize you cared about our Planet?
I think the sense of caring for the planet has always been within me. Since I was a child I would notice the polluted rivers in my city Medellin; the trash, people struggling to survive and wondered how I can help. Now as an adult, I am happy to have found a huge community of like-minded people who are actively making a difference in the way we’re used to treating the planet and how we build communities to be able to provide for each other in harmonious unity with all.
Manu, you've only recently become involved in the world of permaculture. Tell us about your journey.
I had the opportunity to go to Costa Rica with my partner Keagan Walker in February of 2020 for Envision Music Festival. Through the inspiring words and actions of the many speakers at the festival who shared their wisdom and experiences, like Steven Brooks and Paul Stamets, I felt the need to be more immersed in permaculture. Keagan became a Certified Permaculturist with the first Ecoversity class and his graduation granted us an immersive experience in Costa Rica this past March. For the first few months of 2021, we had the pleasure of touring farms, learning about plants, eating delicious exotic fruits, and learning how different communities self-sustain.
"We envision working together as a Certified Permaculturist and Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners to bring healing to as many people as possible and the Planet."
So, Mz. Manu Rosa, what are you most passionate about within the permaculture movement?
Bringing permaculture into the cities. Especially large cities. New York City has lots of trash. But one of the coolest things they have are public compost bins. There’s your landfill bin, the recycling bin, and a lovely third one for compost. SO COOL!!! There are many projects in the city such as urban permaculture gardens in lots that were neglected by the city and filled with trash. This brings the community together to clean, plant, bond and inspires others to do the same. I want to create a project in Miami, where I’m currently based out of. I often ask myself, why does Miami not do the same efforts as New York City!? I'm convinced we need public compost bins in every city. I have been getting involved with free grocery distributions in Miami and we work together with a nonprofit called Farm Share to help families in need of food. I also want to make a positive impact on my home country, Colombia, especially in certain rural areas where people have very little.
Have you been looking into volunteer work in Colombia or is that something you want to do in the future?
Yes, I have been collaborating with a group already. They are called Zona 33: Colombianos En El Exterior (Zone 33: Colombians In The Exterior) and they are currently working on several projects for the community. Another project which really touched me, was bringing wheelchairs to families in very rural areas who are living in difficult conditions. Giving a box of food to a family will last them a day or two but a wheelchair will last a long time. Now, what if people could receive a wheelchair AND we could help provide their families or the community with a way to sustain themselves using the permaculture principles?... If one family in the area is struggling with hunger, you can be sure there are surrounding families that would benefit from coming together to provide for each other.
"Everybody deserves to have the peace of mind of knowing where their next plate of food is going to come from."
If you could envision the sexiest future, what would that look like to you?
The sexiest future is one with equality for women and the LGBTQ community, one with justice for those oppressed especially POC, where we can gather to clean up the mess we’ve made in our oceans and in our hearts, where we can live in peace with our fellow inhabitants of this Earth. Self-accountability, assuming responsibility, taking action, and kicking asses!
One of your many talents resides within the beauty industry. Do you have any tips on more sustainable beauty? Sometimes people don't realize the impact of the single use items or think about the toxins within the products themselves.
You are absolutely right. The makeup industry has a lot of single-use plastic: spoolies, q tips, the packaging of the product itself, etc.
Within this beauty revolution, there are things like The EWG and “Clean At Sephora" that have emerged. Both are kind of like organic food labeling.
Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit environmental group that works to help consumers make the most educated decisions about the products they use or are thinking of consuming. EWG has a campaign and tool on their webiste called "Skin Deep", which is fabulous. You can check if the makeup and skincare products you are using are good for you, with a scale from EWG verified (0) to 10. You can look at anything from Neutrogena to Eminence Organic Skincare.
"Clean At Sephora" is "clean products" that they categorize for people who would like products with less harmful chemicals. However, as you mentioned in our interview pre-chat, it may be a really good, "clean" product but then the packaging is not recyclable or reusable. It’s very hard to find a company that covers all its bases in terms of sustainability, the efficacy of a product, clean ingredients, and affordability.
There are companies making efforts to become more sustainable as they see the demand we, as the consumers, have. Recycled plastics are a temporary solution that eventually goes to waste regardless, and just because something is recyclable or refillable doesn't mean it actually gets recycled or refilled. There's a long way to go to making this system truly circular and accessible, but at least some companies are trying. Your money is like a little vote toward what you want in the world. I’m not saying I’m always perfect in the choices I make but I like to learn from from my mistakes and try to do the best I can. We can all do this.
Now, who or what has inspired you on your Earth-care path?
Throughout my life, I have received and continue to receive divine inspiration from many people, things, and situations. I was inspired to go into the wellness field because I have a line of healers in my family. So now, I carry the medicine torch and I have chosen that my field is a little different because I LOVE Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Herbology is a huge part of TCM, so permaculture goes hand in hand. The first time I heard the word “acupuncturist” was on my favorite Disney princess movie, Mulan. From that moment, I was fascinated. When I was living in Denver a friend invited me to a potluck, I didn’t know that I was going into a room full of inspiration. I was amongst a bunch of acupuncture students who were graduating and were gathering to talk about their business plans and what to do once they graduated. This propelled me to study massage therapy, aesthetics, makeup artistry, permaculture. And now I’m awaiting the next semester to begin pursuing my acupuncture license! My most recent trip to Costa Rica opened my eyes further to the way people can thrive using the permaculture principles. I met many inspirational people who are living their dreams such as yourself and KaityBunny. Such strong female role models to look up to. ❤️ I am excited for what or who will inspire me to go further next.
"I’m just trying to live life and hope I can inspire others with my actions, my will to live free, and my love for the Earth."
- Manu Rosa
This interview has been brought to you by Permaculture Pinup, a project of Green Wave (501(c)(3) nonprofit). If you liked this interview, love what we are doing, and would like to see us continue,
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