Amazon Frontlines@amazonfrontlines

We are a non-profit organization working with indigenous peoples to defend their rights to land, life and cultural survival in the Amazon

Movie night in the Amazon. On a quiet night in a Waorani community, people watch closely as images of resistance are projected on a white sheet. Storytelling and filmmaking have helped build and strengthen the #WaoraniResistance movement against Oil Block 22 in Waorani territory. By showing the devastation that the oil industry can cause, community members better understand the imminent threat posed by the oil industry's expansion into their rainforest. ⠀

Amazon Frontlines and the Ceibo Alliance are training Waorani youth in a variety of communications tools, allowing Waorani youth to share the issues that trouble their communities from their own perspective. ⠀⠀

#amazon #amazonlife#amazingearth #AmazonRainforest #indigenousrights #indigenousresilience#indigenousrising #waterprotectors#forestguardians #resistance#indigenousresistance#indigenousvoices#storytelling#junglestories


Yesterday, the Kofan community of Sinangoe filed a lawsuit against the Ministry of Mining and other Ecuadorian government agencies to annul 20 mining concessions that were improperly granted on the border of Sinangoe’s land. Indigenous peoples have the right to prior consultation regarding any development project that can affect their land or way of life, and although the mining concessions overlap with the rivers Sinangoe depends on to live, they were never consulted. The case also presents a wealth of evidence collected by Sinangoe’s indigenous land patrol demonstrating that the mining companies have been operating without the necessary environmental license or water permits and have been illegally mining outside of the concessions. With their rivers, forest and water at stake, the Kofán are headed to court to defend their land. ⠀

Join the Kofan’s fight against illegal mining by signing and sharing the pledge to #StandWithSinangoe: link in bio.⠀

#amazon #amazonlife#AmazonRainforest #indigenousrights #indigenousresilience#indigenousrising#forestguardians #resistance#indigenousresistance#climatechange#climatejustice #humanrights


Generation to generation, traditional knowledge of indigenous Amazonians has been passed on over centuries. Nature used to be the school while family members were the teachers. Indigenous youth would learn about medicine by walking with their parents or relatives, harvesting wild plants and being in direct contact with the forest. ⠀

With modern day dynamics and western influence, much of the traditional ways are changing and significant knowledge is being lost. But taking advantage of modern technology can be a way of preventing this knowledge from being lost forever. Youth, like Jimmy and Ribaldo Piaguaje of the Secoya nation, are documenting this traditional forest wisdom in a series of short videos about medicinal plants. With the help of their elders, the youth are encapsulating this knowledge to be shared with future generations. More than a modest approach to build a library of information on thousands upon thousands of plants, it is an attempt by these youth to be in direct contact with ancestral knowledge and to share this learning with the rest of the nation. ⠀

Amazon Frontlines and the Ceibo Alliance are training indigenous youth to tell their own stories and the stories from their nations through video and photography in our Indigenous Storytellers program.⠀

#amazon #amazonlife##AmazonRainforest #indigenousrights #indigenousresilience#indigenousrising#forestguardians #resistance#indigenousresistance#culture#indigenousculture#culturaindigena#humanrights


Waorani women sing like their grandmothers sang and their grandmother's grandmothers before them. They sing from before dawn until late at night as the embers from the cook fire burn low. ⠀

Through their songs they teach their children about life in the forest and they give them advice on how to be wise and good people. Some songs tell stories while others describe dreams, but all songs contain a deep love for and understanding of life in the rainforest. ⠀

#amazon #amazonlife#amazingearth #AmazonRainforest #indigenousrights #indigenousresilience#indigenousrising#forestguardians #resistance#indigenousresistance#women#indigenouswomen#humanrights


Can a bit of brown sugar help indigenous communities overcome a history of oppression and violence? The Siona women of Putumayo believe so. ⠀

For decades, armed groups, oil and mining companies have had their sights set on indigenous territories in the Putumayo region of Colombia. Within this context, women have organized and are seeking economic alternatives to activities that threaten their territories through the cultivation of sugar cane and the production of brown sugar. With the income they earn through the sale of this product, the women can provide for their families and help their children access education that may free them from the cycle of violence and cultural loss. ⠀

It is not an easy path, but every woman and every family that can take a step away from the violence that consumes so many represents a ray of hope for these communities. ⠀

#amazon #amazonlife#amazingearth #AmazonRainforest #indigenousrights #indigenousresilience#indigenousrising #waterprotectors#forestguardians #resistance#indigenousresistance#women#indigenouswomen#humanrights


Pictured above (from right to left) Luke Weiss of @AmazonFrontlines, Luis Freitas from the Instituto de Investigación Amazonia Peruano (IIAP), and Roldan Acuteros from the Peruvian Secoya village of Wajoya, participate in the harvest of Mauritia flexuoso palm fruits commonly known as aguaje (Peru) or morete (Ecuador), at IIAP’s experimental plot on the outskirts of Iquitos, Peru. Typically reaching heights of more than 30 meters (120 feet), this palm is the dominant tree species within a common lowland ecosystem known as the aguajal or moretal. ⠀

Deliciously rich in fatty acids and with five times more vitamin A than carrots, this nutritious fruit is a favorite among the indigenous peoples of the Amazon. As community leader Roldan mentions “When in season, the fruits and its beverages are a staple for nourishing the bodies and minds of the children and give us unlimited energy… and yet sad to see them so often chopped down for harvesting, and far worse… entire aguajales being drained and cleared for the planting of African Oil Palm”. Its ecological role as a critical food source for animals such as the tapir, peccary, numerous monkeys, rodents such as the paca and agouti, and several macaw species, are the basis of an immense body of scientific literature. ⠀

The conservation of this palm species is also critical in preventing global warming, as the moretal peat swamp ecosystem sequesters nearly 4 times the quantity of carbon as other Amazonian forest types. ⠀

#amazon#amazingearth #AmazonRainforest#indigenousland#nature#forests#biodiversity #environment#rainforest #trees #conservation#biodiversityhotspot


Can a wasp save a sacred, medicinal Amazonian vine?⠀

The rare tarantula wasp of the Pepsis genus, measuring an astounding 3 inches in length, is metallic blue and feared for its incredibly painful sting. This wasp may also be the mysterious key in the complex reproductive strategy of Yoco Paullinia, a caffeine-rich liana drank by several indigenous groups in the upper Amazon.⠀

The yoco vine, seen by many as in jeopardy of extinction from unsustainable management and over-harvesting, has an additional complexity in that the plant intentionally staggers the flowering of its male and female blossoms to avoid self pollination and enhance its genetic variability. However, as wild vines become more and more rare and separated by distances of several kilometers, the population is beyond the limit of most pollinators.⠀

The tarantula wasp is revered by locals for its prowess as a fearless, lone hunter, and even employed in a centuries-old ritual in the training of youth and hunting dogs. Today, as intensive community-based monitoring of the Yoco vine is underway, it appears as though this wasp is literally ‘threading the needle’ within a mega-complex ecological web with its capacity for precise, long-range pollination, and allowing for Yoco to reproduce during these times of population collapse.⠀

Amazon Frontlines and the Ceibo Alliance are supporting a 3-Nation effort to re-establish a sustainable population of Yoco within indigenous communities. Learn more about our initiatives to recover ancient Amazonian plants by following the link in our bio. ⠀

#amazon#amazingearth #AmazonRainforest#indigenousland#nature#forests#biodiversity##naturelovers #rivers#waterislife #environment#rainforest #trees #conservation#animalsofinstagram#biodiversityhotspot


Siona villagers, like this woman pictured here, from Puerto Silencio in the Putumayo region of Colombia experience a wide range of health problems, likely linked to contact with water contaminated by nearby oil operations. In addition to the dangers the Siona of Puerto Silencio face from the Colombian armed conflict and the narcotics trade, the incursion of oil companies threatens their health and their territory. ⠀

In the coming weeks, Amazon Frontlines and our partners Alianza Ceibo will be building rainwater catchment systems with filters to provide the residents of Puerto Silencio with access to clean, safe drinking water. You can learn more about Puerto Silencio by reading the recent article in The Guardian and then help bring clean water to Puerto Silencio by supporting the #LessOilMoreWater campaign: link in bio.⠀

#SionaSurvival #PervivenciaSiona


Placido Yaiguaje Payaguaje and his brother Celio spoke to The Guardian at the spot where their 80 year-old mother was killed by a land-mine placed near one of her favorite fishing spots in their ancestral rainforest territory in 2012. Eloisa Payaguaje, one of the last Siona elders of the Colombian community of Puerto Silencio who could cure illnesses with medicinal plants, fell victim to the ongoing armed-conflict that for decades has used the ancestral territory of Amazonian indigenous peoples as a battleground. ⠀

In order to protect the Amazon, we must protect the millinery indigenous peoples who risk their lives standing firm as its defenders. Please read part 1 in this two-part series in The Guardian about the Siona people of the Putumayo and their struggle to defend their way of life against all odds ( and then sign the pledge to #StandWithIndigenousPeoples: link in bio.⠀

#SionaSurvival #PervivenciaSiona


How should indigenous forest peoples respond when the state declares them at risk of physical and cultural extinction?⠀

How can they continue to protect their land and cultures when squeezed on all sides by armed conflict and encroaching oil companies?⠀

To whom do they turn when they are abandoned by the very government institutions tasked with their protection?⠀

Please read part 1 in the two-part series from @Guardian about the Siona people of the Putumayo and their struggle to defend their way of life against all odds: link in bio. ⠀

#SionaSurvival #PervivenciaSiona


Did you know that the amount of oil spilled in the Ecuadorian Amazon is more than ALL of the following major oil spills COMBINED? Between 2005 and 2015 alone, the Ecuadorian government registered more than 900 oil spills in this small corner of the Amazon, showing that even today exploiting oil in this remote area is highly risky and a threat to all Amazonian peoples and the environment.

Amazon Frontlines’ Environmental Monitoring program is working with frontlines indigenous communities to provide them with accurate information about the impacts of oil on their health and lands.

Learn more about the impacts from the oil industry and our work at:


There is a conflict of visions over the Waorani people’s ancestral territory in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Where the government and oil companies see oil blocks and sparsely populated areas, the Waorani see a territory full of life: animal breeding grounds, ancient medicinal gardens and the land their ancestors freely roamed for millennia. The Waorani have been working with @amazonfrontlines to produce maps that reflect their vision of this land, so that the world may understand that there is more to their rainforest than the “official” maps show. ⠀

Learn more about the Waorani’s mapping project and support their struggle to protect their forest by visiting: link in bio. ⠀

#WaoraniResistance #ResistenciaWaorani