The Huwã Karu Yuxibu Centre Social-Environmental Project is one of the most successful projects operating near an urban environment in Amazonia today which aims at the cultural reintegration of displaced indigenous peoples in Acre. The Project engages such young people in reforestation practices, provides them with education, health and promotes their social reintegration to their original culture so as to strengthen their identity as Huni Kuî or other indigenous people. Displaced indigenous peoples, away from their family and community must face great prejudice in Brazilian cities and often live in very marginalized conditions in the urban areas of Amazonia. Our Center welcomes them, breaking the cycle of alcoholism and drug addiction, and provides the reintegration of such peoples into their communities. Over eighty families and over two-hundred and fifty indigenous peoples living in marginalised conditions in urban areas outside their community have been benefitted bythe project up until today. The reforestation project comprises the creation of a seed bank of traditional seeds to recover degraded farm land by bringing back biodiversity. The project promotes food sovereignty, and the preservation of indigenous languages, graphism, ritual dances, prayers, music, forest medicines, artisanship. Its program of reintegrating indigenous young people implies community reintegration as well astraditional dieting for health and curing.
We began with the purchase of 12,000 hectares of land followed by the building of a prayer house and community centre near Rio Branco (funded in part by the BoaFoundation), then followed with the construction of a community restaurant where traditional indigenous food is served, as well as shelters for hosting indigenous youth(funded by the Alok Institute in Brazil). We still intend to build a workshop of teaching indigenous young people traditional crafts and artisanship, a school for community children, and a facility for welcoming interested visitors and financiers (a space dedicated to the for research and development of new technologies based on the indigenous knowledge and wisdom), apart from a storage facility for the intended seed bank. By acquiring more land for reforestation, we hope to expand our project so as to promote more autonomy, self-sufficiency, and food sovereignty with the use of agroforestry, recovering of traditional seeds, making medicine gardens (living pharmacies), as well as engaging in sustainable building, fisheries, preserving water sources, and environmental education. Fencing with ditches for fire protection ad provision for animal crossings as well as monitoring towers to prevent the spread of forest fires are part of our future plans. The latter is fundamental since part of the Centre’s land and installations burned down by forest fires in 2019 and we had to immediate rebuild to continue in operation.