Mapuche People

Organization: Francisco Pichún Indigenous Community

Participant: Ivette Antilaf Pichún

Country: Chili

This project aimed to sensitize the Mapuche Indigenous Communities about the negative environmental impacts of the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides and other toxic substances that contaminate the land in agriculture. The aim was to empower the participants to practise ecological agriculture and to contribute to biodiversity by using the natural resources found in their local communities. 

The program consisted of a series of talks and training sessions, where the participants were offered information on climate change, the relationship between conventional agriculture and diseases, and the importance of caring for Mother Earth. They were also trained to practise local agriculture with organic materials. 

Other workshops focused on the UN Sustainable Development Goals, as well as on opportunities related to agroecology that exist within government programs. Throughout the project, the participants held conversations about the ancestral agricultural practices of the Mapuche People. 

The project also coordinated with local radio stations to broadcast information on agricultural practices and to announce its closing event: a public exhibition of the program’s activities, with a presentation of how these benefit the local community. Finally, the project led to the creation of an agricultural centre that will serve to spread information on ancestral practices, teach agroecology techniques, and offer food grown by the community to its visitors.