Dear Friends & Supporters,
Thanks to the help of each and everyone of you who believe that indigenous students should have equal opportunities, exciting things have been happening on the ground for indigenous student organization OEPIAP, which represents over 120 indigenous youth from 15 Amazonian peoples.
With negotiations with the regional government for land titling to build a permanent student centre still under way, our immediate aim is to improve the students’ living and working conditions in the short and medium term. In the past months, we have been working to strengthen OEPIAP’s leadership through technical support, logistics and accompaniment for political lobbying. These efforts, made possible thanks to your donation, have already contributed to new additions being implemented at the temporary student centre where the students reside under difficult conditions: a new maloca (traditional Amazonian community house) is under construction to serve as a proper study space with access to computers. New temporary bungalows are being built as accommodation. The kitchen and dining maloca are also being improved.
Loreto's Regional Governor has promised that the land for the permanent student centre will soon be handed over, yet it will take time and planning before anything can be built there. We are optimistic about the outcome as we and the students keep on the pressure for this pledge to be fulfilled, developing new strategies and alliances to this end along the way.
Our Chaikuni Institute Permaculture staff also offered its first Permaculture workshop on site
for the indigenous students, during which we inaugurated unique urban gardens with edible and medicinal plants such as papaya, ginger, basil and lemongrass to improve their diet and health.
“I like to support and help”, says Tito, one of the five indigenous students working to set up the gardens. “I like to sow plants and make them grow, to see their fruit and from this we will get a good product to consume or to sell.” The next steps for the students’ garden will be to plant more varieties, implement a compost system and to find a better solution for the waste water from the kitchen.
None of this could have been possible without the support of special individuals and foundations who provide the funds to help improve the everyday living and studying conditions of indigenous youth and to build this much needed permanent student centre, which will pave the way towards a truly intercultural education and society in Loreto with Amazonian indigenous youth as key actors.
We have made a beautiful start to this project thanks to your confidence in our work.
We'll keep you updated as this project progresses and as we continue to run our campaign for the full goal of $24,000.Sign up to The Chaikuni Institute newsletter here
for exclusive updates on the project and news on our work in the heart of the Peruvian Amazon.With Gratitude and Love,
The Chaikuni Institute Team