It is my esteemed pleasure to introduce you to the man who inspired (and continues to inspire) the 300 Acres project, Quichuar healer and Director of the School of Guayusa – Flavio Santi. I met Flavio when he came to Google for the Google Earth Outreach/Indigenous Mapping Summit just a few weeks ago. He came to learn Maps, Earth, and ODK – our mobile data collection system, and take them back to his people as new cultural preservation tools.
Denise Zmekhol whose film Children of the Amazon has won numerous Best Picture and Best Documentary awards, had the opportunity to interview Flavio – that of which is seen here for the first time. Her editorial staff got the video to us as soon as possible (huge thanks to them!), and 300 Acres co-founder Shalaco Sching posted the video with subtitles (thanks to dear friend Miranda Reyna-Metzler who translated the video).
I’m sure you’ll be inspired by his immersive storytelling, the stunning photos of his people and the Amazanga land, as well as the delightful instrumental music from his native land. Whether you’re acquainted with the Spanish language or not, you’re sure to feel the depth and breadth of his mission – to protect the lands of the Quichua people, and the plea to people everywhere to collaborate in order to save our Earth for future generations.
My name is Flavio Santi, I come from Ecuador, from the central Amazonian jungle, from the Amazanga community.
In our country we are 48% indigenous population. I am dedicated to working on cultural and spiritual conservation, as well as on the protection of nature and of nature’s sacred places.
On behalf of the Ecuadorians, I bring the message that we can change our attitude in the way that we look at developing nature. We want to participate in this development.
We have cultural wealth. We are not poor; we are rich. We are rich in our jungle because we have knowledge, culture, and spirituality. We have riches in the jungle: petroleum, gold…”green gold”, as says biogenetics. We also have other medicinal plants. Our jungle is a natural pharmacy. Our jungle is our supermarket, so we are rich. But they are robbing our lands.
In the Amazon, in Ecuador, we face right now a great threat of petroleum, logging, and gold mining interests. We also face threat in the sense of the privatization of sacred places and the privatization of water. This worries us as indigenous people that live in the interior of the jungle.
I bring this news and important thank you to the Google company for the technologies that they are developing that serve nature and the world. The use of these technologies is very important in order for us to protect nature.
I want to invite the young people of the north, the (dear) grandmothers and grandfathers, missionaries, military people, the Catholic church as well as other religious groups, I wanted to invite you all to say that we should come together to look for the best way to save the earth so that our future generations live in a healthy earth; an earth without wrong-doing.
Suma causa, suma galpa.
Thank you very much.