Healing Bridges and the Traditional Authorities
The heart of our work is the ritual ceremony of traditional indigenous medicine, the drinking of Yagé. Also known as Ayahuasca, Yagé is a sacred medicine made with a jungle vine and other plants and is administered by the A’i curacas (shamans) who are the A’i’s Traditional Authorities, spiritual leaders who safeguard A’i traditions and culture through their ceremony.
A typical gathering lasts three and three nights. The curacas and their followers from five territories meet, and we all share information and brainstorm next steps. The curacas lead ceremony each night, during which they obtain their vision, and share their reflections. This two-way intercultural dialogue leads to our translating their thought into targeted petitions to the Colombian Government. We then engage outside actors, such as the United Nations, the Inter American Commission on Human Rights, and/or the U.S. Government to support the petitions.
LEGAL DEFENSE OF TERRITORY AND OTHER RIGHTS before the Colombian courts and the Inter American Commission on Human Rights.
HUMAN RIGHTS ADVOCACY before the Colombian and U.S. governments, the Organization of American States, and the United Nations.
SUPPORT FOR AGRICULTURAL PROJECTS in aquaculture, aviculture, and crops to enhance food security, foster development with culture and identity, and encourage an earth-friendly economy.
ENGAGEMENT to civil society, religious institutions, academia, student groups, and activist networks in Colombia and the United States to garner political support.
- Suspension of the construction of the military base of the Special Roads and Energy Brigade No. 9.
- Judgement through a Constitutional Recourse (Tutela) that ordered prior consultation with the Kofan Indigenous Reservation of Santa Rosa del Guamuéz regarding the highway construction Santa Ana – San Miguel.
- Judgement through a Constitutional Recourse (Tutela) that ordered the restoration of the Kofan territory to the Kofan Indigenous Reservation of Santa Rosa del Guamuéz.
- Construction of three ceremonial houses, several chicken coops, and the enlarging and/or new construction of eight aquaculture ponds.