Alianza Arkana

The Arkana Alliance is committed to raising awareness about the current environmental and social crises in the Amazon; supporting the creation, connection and strengthening of strategic networks and regional and community-based alliances; and inspiring positive change at local, national and international levels to protect and preserve the people, environment, and ancient traditions of the Amazon Rainforest.
Jul 17, 2014

Launching 2nd Stage Grow & Cook Program

Just under two months ago, we set up the second stage of a project in the indigenous Shipibo community of Puerto Firmeza where last year a Mexican nutritionist, Mariana, was working with us to run workshops for a group of mothers to teach them about  balanced and healthy nutrition for their families. Mariana did this through the medium of cooking meals together with the women of the communities and adapting traditional recipes to include the nutrients that she had identified were missing in their diet as they changed from a traditional diet to a more Western based diet (including more carbohydrates and sugars into their diet).

In this new phase of the program we are supporting the mothers to continue to cook together and also to offer a lunch of high nutritional value once a week to the children at the local school, which uses produce locally grown at the permaculture project attached to the community. The delightful thing to see is how the mothers are implementing what they learnt in the first phase in this second phase without needing the support of a nutritionist. An additional exciting development is that the program is now run coordinated by two young Shipibo women, Liz and Marleni. Liz is our administrative assistant and has always dreamed of becoming a nutritionist or a pediatrician. Marleni is a trained nurse who brings her scientific knowhow about the human body to these classes, all in their indigenous language. Additionally, Marleni will be continuing her studies into the masters level with a scholarship through Alianza Arkana later this year. We are very excited to see these Shipibo women emerge as community leaders.

The dedication and progress the mothers are making towards the promotion of healthy diet choices in puesuit of seeing their children thrive is really an inspiring one to watch. It is thanks to the support of people like you that this project continues to be such a success!  

Enjoying a nutritious meal
Enjoying a nutritious meal
Everyone gets some!
Everyone gets some!
Jun 2, 2014

The Fiction of Pluspetrol's Benevolence

Oil contaminated soils
Oil contaminated soils

In 2013, after decades of protests by the indigenous populations, government testing finally confirmed the devastating contamination of hydrocarbons and other toxic elements in the soil and water of four major river basins. The indigenous groups of the Pastaza, Corrientes, Tigre, and Marañon river basins in the Northern Peruvian Amazon have witnessed over 43 years of oil activities in their territories. This directly jeopardizes people's health and well-being, as well as threatening the ecosystems they depend on to survive. By May 2014, all four river basins had been declared "environmental emergencies" and "sanitary emergencies" by the Peruvian government.

Argentinian-based oil company, Pluspetrol, has been operating the two large oil concessions affecting the area, Lot 1AB/Lot 192 and Lot 8, since 2001 and 1996 respectively. Despite the scientific results showing more than 352 times the allowable levels of certain heavy metals, Pluspetrol maintains a public discourse of "zero contamination".

They generally blame their predecessors for the mess and portray themselves as a responsible company that generates local development and champions environmental stewardship. Making use of a powerful and twisted PR machine and the remote nature of their operations, Pluspetrol attempts to withhold the disturbing truth of their significant role in this environmental disaster from the Peruvian and international public.

Alianza Arkana is committed to working alongside the local indigenous federations to break the silence and shed light on these environmental and social atrocities.

This publication—The Misleading Art of Commercial Deception: How to Transform a Major Polluter into an Environmentally Sustainable and Socially Responsible Company – is grounded in the direct experiences and struggles of our indigenous partners affected by Pluspetrol's activities.

We aim to dismantle Pluspetrol's misleading public discourse and reveal still more disturbing facts behind the oil company's social and environmental abuses in the Northern Peruvian Amazon.

Click here to read the full publication.

The Misleading Art of Commercial Deception
The Misleading Art of Commercial Deception
Areas of Environmental Emergency
Areas of Environmental Emergency
Child with skin rash from contamination
Child with skin rash from contamination
Oil spill in Pacaya Samiria Natural Reserve
Oil spill in Pacaya Samiria Natural Reserve
Apr 17, 2014

True Intercultural Education in the Making

Dear Friends of the Amazon,

We would like you to meet Judith, 18 years old, from Puerto Firmeza Community. Judith is a recent graduate of the intercultural school that Aliana Arkana supports in her community. Now that she has finished her highschool studies, Judith wants to pursue a degree in Intercultural Education at the Intercultural University of the Amazon (UNIA). 


"I chose to study Intercultural Education because I love to teach, especially children. I am the second of 8 children, 4 girls and 4 boys, and ever since I was small, I loved to teach my siblings art, jokes, and songs. I like to sing, especially ballads and masha -happy Shipibo songs sung at events, at home, or in the garden.

"I want to teach primary school and I want the kids in my school to learn how to speak and write in the Shipibo language. Many schools are only teaching Spanish now, but it's important that our culture and language are not lost, so I want to change that, and bring quality teaching in Shipibo.

"I have seen people who have failed at higher education, and that will not be me. When you are committed, everything is possible!" 

Support true intercultural education today!

Your contributions to Alianza Arkana will help us give Judith a scholarship to get her college degree, and return to her community to make a difference in the lives of those she loves through her strong teaching, her humor, and her traditional songs.  

Irake! Thank you so much!

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