SHIPIBO PEOPLES – Matriarchal & Artists Fair Trade Support
San Francisco Village, Pucallpa, Peru
Peru, the place that stole my heart, that renews my soul and spirit. It allows me to be free and think like a free man, without constraints, where every day is a new beginning; where, I can begin again and follow the path I was intended to take. I can fly and I can dream. This is where it began for me, this journey. The womb of this land gave birth to the idea of the Inti Raymi Fund; it grew until it became tangible. Every moment and every action has lead me to be here, and to do this- Chimu
Financial Support and Fair Trade Agreement
The Inti Raymi Fund provided financial assistance to every grandmother, mother, and expecting mother in this jungle community of San Francisco, Pucallpa, Peru. Additionally, these women of San Francisco now have an Artisan Agreement with the Inti Raymi Fund to exclusively provide their unique hand-made Shipibo Bracelets for the Inti Raymi Fund, which are given as gifts to our donors upon request.
Over a three-year period, the Inti Raymi Fund visited the San Francisco Community on three occasions, getting to know a number of local residents and artists prior to funding this project. As part of the process, we deliver a public presentation, introduce ourselves, talk about what we do, and give the people a chance to decide if they need our financial assistance. There is usually a discussion as to what could be done to help the community. It varies from place to place, but all are invited to attend and encouraged to participate. The process usually takes time, as we have to give people a chance to absorb the information and communally figure out what they most need. In this village roughly 200 of the 800 residents attended our presentation which was a reasonably high turnout. However, upon return to hear to how the residents would want to use the $25,000 gift towards a community self-help project, no one showed up, except for one of the elders.
This was highly suspicious so we elected to follow our instincts, and take author of Dressmaker of Khair Khana, Gayle Tzemach Lemmon’s advice, “you can’t go wrong, voting with the women of a village”. This is exactly what we did. We announced on the loud speaker, for the first 250 grandmothers, mothers and expecting mothers, we would gift $100USD! For two hours following, we had the entire village’s women line up for their share of the community gift, each receiving a blue oil paint mark on their left arm to ensure minimal abuse. Although we considered this, a project failure in terms of socially responsible self-help projects, it was a successful outcome to an almost disastrous misallocation of charitable money.
As with many adversities, there is a silver lining with this Shipibo Passion Project. The Inti Raymi Fund and the women of the San Francisco community have forged an alliance allowing the women artisans of the village to be the exclusive provider of their beautiful hand-made beaded bracelets. This allows the Inti Raymi Fund to display the beauty from the Jungle captured in their artwork as gifts to show the world, and it helps sustain the village with a significant work agreement.
Start Date: July, 2012
Completion Date: July, 2012
Funded so far: $25,000 USD
Total Project: $25,000 USD
Lives Affected: 1,000
Gilber Reategui Sangama with wife Silvia & son Israel, CHIMU - IRF Director