Community and Rescue Institute for Indigenous Salvadorans
Rescue Salvadoran Indigenous Ancestral (RAIS); born about 3 decades ago; as part of the Commonwealth of Latin India Solar; an international organization based in Mexico.
However, the organization was recognized both nationally and also internationally due to its works mainly educating people through, workshops, seminars on culture in El Salvador.
RAIS was a non-governmental organization, apolitical, non-profit; which based its work on the principles of the worldview; as well as historical memory of indigenous peoples; in line with the agreements of the advice of biodiversity in its objectives, goals and actions.
These were the objectives of RAIS :
- To contribute to the rescue of the historical and ancestral memory of the Salvadoran people; promoting sustainable development based on identity and culture; as well as improving the quality of life for them.
With international projection
- Open spaces where El Salvador to disclose their culture and ancestral knowledge to the world.
- Keep an updated and dynamic website; which contains the Salvadoran culture and ancestral indigenous culture.
- Position the Radio RAIS in the Salvadoran community around the world as regards the Salvadoran culture.
- Introduce the Salvadoran culture worldwide, creating opportunities for people to meet; and have a reference of this knowledge on the Salvadoran identity and ancestral culture of our country.
With national projection
- To contribute to indigenous community, has strengthened its organizational capacity, being able to define; and conduct their own community development strategy based on ancestral values and principles.
- Through our intervention and the development of actions coordinated with national; and international agencies it has enabled the community comprehensive training in the nuclei of indigenous populations.
- Recognize culture and ancestral knowledge of El Salvador through the communication strategy of the media conscious and consistent with the theme; and needs depending on their participatory and sustainable development thereof.
- Support productive units of goods and services, and the exploitation of natural resources in the community, productive, social and geographical character; in the search for equity, quality of life and harmony with the environment.
- Promoting Educational Vision ancestral “form of life” to allow community that the methodology “learning by doing” constitutes an efficient way to deal with the current reality; using technology and the cyber age.
- Transmit and disseminate knowledge of the ancient world view, to strengthen indigenous spirituality; becoming a concrete way to achieve balance between material life as well as personal aspirations in the collective harmonic coexistence environment
RAIS work in the Community
- However, the project; born about three decades ago; as part of the Commonwealth of Latin India Solar, an international organization based in Mexico. Participates in several international meetings and developing a nationwide work, workshops, seminars on our culture; receives ambassadors of different native peoples; who come to enrich and support the work.
- In 1981 he organized the first meeting IN Lakech (You are my other self); in El Salvador; representatives of all the peoples of America, obeying the fulfillment of prophecy; which ‘silence Peoples Indigenous ended and the Eagle and the Condor’; the Indigenous peoples of the South and North in the center of America reunited.
- However, with this marvelous sowing work grows and we become the KAL Council TUNAL; (Casa del Sol) to coordinate all this harvest. Then, by decision of the Council of Elders, nationally and internationally; they have always advised us; we became as RAIS in 1994, with legal personality. Thereafter, every day the sacred tree, full of sap is nourished with the worldview of the People In Lakech, Laken grows; (nonetheless, you are my other self, and I am yourself); greeting enclosing the respect for others; seeing and doing around us in our own face. Moreover, this is because we understand that we are to serve life through our mother earth.
- RAIS, works with four indigenous peoples recognized in El Salvador: Nahua, Lenca, Chorti and Cacaoperas.
- also with those communities that are not recognized as indigenous peoples.
- We work internationally, advising studies and initiatives in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala.
Its mission statement
However, working for the rescue and revival of science and ancient wisdom; updating and implementation in this period; “for those who are not born seven generations to come,” responsibly and technique; through programs and projects consistent with this thought; so that the combined efforts make resurgence ancestral knowledge and science is to benefit the quality of life of the community in the region.
Its vision statement
Being an institution that works for life plans, community and indigenous peoples, with an attitude to propose new agendas that allow spaces in society for the visibility of these communities and people.
Values of RAIS
Respect, transverse axis of culture, philosophy and ancient science. However, respect for the whole environment and the life out of oneself and practicing what they say grandmothers: “Every action, every thought, every feeling, before you do, we must think how it affects 7 generations; for those who are not born”.
Solidarity, all live and share in community, based on the ancient philosophy: “See that and on the other to oneself.”
Love, from the idea that everything is the work of the Creator and Maker; so everything is in our hearts. The ancient wisdom says: “I give my heart, through my actions.”
Responsibility, we are all responsible for what happens on planet earth and the universe; so says the original wisdom that “we come to this planet, as I am, to become of us are.”
Below are some content that I grabbed from the wayback machine about some of the projects and works undertaken by the organization. Initially the content was published in Spanish; and I had to go through the hustle of republishing it in English.
However, the organization also had a radio frequency to champion its course as well as produced periodical magazine publications for the same purpose. I will be adding more content in future; so don’t fail to bookmark this site.
The original and the Indian
Let us together a metaphorical literary recognition of ethnological Salvadoran reality. Between truth and falsehood there is a thin line; and is so tiny it can be used subtly to manipulate history. Therefore arise right and left; (when glaring lies in trouble); so we are called to use at least two of our senses to not be manipulated.
Furthermore, in the absence of people, there is a story; so we are history, and ourselves depends repeat it, build it, or change it. Because of the tiny line of confusion we are called to open your eyes wide and separated from the heart, not to mourn later; we are called to open your ears well and separate the heart from hearing and seeing in the future realities regret for us or for our children.
This is the origin of the great social problems of El Salvador and the most gentle and diplomatic way of saying to officials, it is: “the problem is complex.”
Today another anniversary looming over 21.01.1932; in which we talk about the facts; not the wedges to be so complex. Many beat their breasts and tear their hair before pulling his chiviadores dice to see how many votes are achieved by the subject. However, for them it is easy to get votes. The reason is because now we have stolen the identity many do not know where they come from; or where they are going.
Much less they know that their families were those who had everything to live in this country; where there were poor and poverty; not poor. Simply because they would not need a job to survive, or a trade to sell their services. Furthermore, today there are many professionals. But remain poor, and sobreblow. This was because they did not inherit the wealth that our grandparents had.
Albeit complex would not only soothing. But a tranquilizer or medicine, to return to rescue the Salvadoran identity, from an objective reality, from every point of view. The legal and public recognition of our true identity is necessary; reviewing the history and making public policies that help to redress and dignity of what remains.
Not just keep repeating acts of irrationality, they aggravate social problems. El Salvador today is what we have done for him; and even complex, is not what we all deserve. But are rational. The first step to change is not justifying our actions. But by recognizing our mistakes and demand respect before we respect others, before using violence to defend our narrow interests is better redress, or show signs of humility for forgiveness.
Moreover, we believe that we are all brothers; and so we understood all the complex reality though were our guests and friends; then our employers; and our brothers today means that we share this piece of land called El Salvador first.
Alexandro Tepas Lapa
Orinario Nahuatl Pipil
Culture Rama Threatened
Who is Rama?
Furthermore, he spent more than a year since my first visit. Shyness that characterizes became part of the past. Hugs, smiles and looks happy sprouted on this second occasion with my arrival in Punta Bangkukuk Taik or Eagle.
Not many visits they receive in Bangkukuk Taik, one of six indigenous community Rama; where seven old men still living who speak their native language, in the South Atlantic Autonomous Region of Nicaragua, RAAS.
The smiles and cheerful welcome not last long
Almost he felt sorrow in the silence of the leaves of the trees of that indigenous community. Therefore, one of the old Rama dying in his wooden hut and palm.
James Wilson, with more than 80 years, is one of the elderly who live in the community. Every time they visit the elderly Branc; manages to speak in his native tongue; although less fluent. Fatigue weakens and is leaving without words. James Wilson is turned off; and with it, slowly, the tongue Rama.
Furthermore, he is living from fishing and agriculture, as most indigenous Rama. But a terminal liver cancer has prostrate in a hammock bag. His life partner, Cleotilde Wilson; also indigenous Rama, accompanies him day and night. Neither the song nor the orioles and the sound of the waves manage to ease his pain.
Lost school year
Impotence feel like the life of James, everything here seems to be fading: in the community of Eagle Point about 40 families live. Last year was a 80. In the only primary school in the community there also were without teachers; and students lost the year.
“However, the teachers said they were going to Bluefields some workshops. One came and went the other. Thus they passed; and we realized that there was good at school. We had to report them to the Ministry of Education,” said Luis Castillo Zamora; attorney Rama Kriol Territorial Government and former leader of the community.
A lost year; where neither English nor Spanish; let alone the language Rama, could be taught to children Bangkukuk Taik.
However, in the school structure are only disordered chairs, a table, a bookcase and a blackboard where written in white chalk; that almost sounds like a farewell seen: “I have your love. It is a message of Mark.”
Angela Benjamin, Rama old resident of the community and not lose hope that a new teacher comes and imparts classes. Otherwise, he warns, some families end up leaving Bluefields Bay; or the island of Rama Cay to enroll their children in school.
Benjamin regrets that neither linguists interested in rescuing the tongue have reappeared in the community.
Meanwhile, the president of the Territorial Government Rama Kriol, James Thomas, said that by 2012 there would be a teacher in the community.
However, despite all the problems of isolation and neglect, the Branch will not surrender. In the center of the community Bangkukuk Taik; a change begins to be observed. It is building a “multi-home” for visitors to the area.
“Lodging, food, rooms and light will be provided with solar panels that will be donated by the World Bank” to this social project, says Luis Castillo; Attorney Rama Kriol Territorial Government.
“We are the first to receive support among community in the area,” says proud Castle.
In May they hope to create a path to the community; where there is currently no electricity, running water or police presence or a care centers; where they can assess the health of the inhabitants.
When James Wilson ill he had to leave in a small boat; and spend about five hours at sea to be treated and diagnosed in Bluefields. Once back, he knows he is not likely to get to see those changes that advertise for their community.
Still, Wilson managed to get out of his hammock to see us off. However, her friend Angela Benjamin said goodbye to him with a few words in Rama. Wilson replied that when he dies he wants to be buried beside his mother in the highest part of the community; where leafy trees and overlooking the Gulf of Punta Eagle adorn the horizon. From there the evening light is seen; and is seen as the last rays of sunlight fade away until sunset.
Languages in danger of disappearing
Nonetheless, according to the latest report released by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, Unesco, it is estimated that if nothing is done to prevent it; half of the 6,000 languages currently spoken disappear later this century.
“With the disappearance of unwritten and undocumented languages, humanity would lose not only a great cultural richness. But also ancient knowledge content; particularly in indigenous languages,” says the report.
Rama indigenous language is part of the map of languages in danger of extinction prepared by UNESCO. The report puts in risk level “critical”; which is the highest just before the disappearance of a language.
Getting to Bankuku Taik or Eagle Point
Moreover, to reach Punta Bankuku Taik or Eagle; first go overland from Managua to El Rama. There are 290 kilometers and takes about five hours. Then you must take a boat that takes you to Bluefields in an hour and a half. Once there, you should sleep in the city; and leave the next day very early to sail two hours by speedboat to the Rama community. Moreover, the tour can take back two days. Although a little more expensive; you can make part of the journey by air from Managua to Bluefields in an hour.
To learn more about the language and culture Rama visit:
- Nora Rigby Library in the University of the Autonomous Regions of the Nicaraguan Caribbean Coast, URACCAN in Bluefields.
- Also in the headquarters of the Rama Territorial Government, Kriol in the city of Bluefields.
NOBEL PRIZE (2010) of ECOLOGY
… IS FOR MEXICAN …
A few know it. But there is a “Nobel” of Ecology. This year it has won such prize Jesús León Santos, 42; an indigenous Mexican farmer who has been making in the last 25 years; an outstanding job of reforestation in their region of Oaxaca, Mexico. However, the name of the reward is “Goldman Environmental Prize”
( Gold Man Prize ).
It was created in 1990 by two generous US philanthropists and civic activists Richard N. Goldman and his wife, Rhoda H. Goldman.
It consists of an allocation of $ 150,000 ($ 2,154,000 MN) and is awarded every year in April, in the city of San Francisco, California (United States).
So far it has been awarded to environmental advocates from 72 countries. In 1991, he won the African Wangari Maathai, who later won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004.
Jesus Leon Santos have given him. However, this is because when he was 18, he decided to change the landscape; where he lived in the High Mixteca, the “land of the sun”. It looked like a moonscape: barren and dusty fields, devoid of trees, without water and fruit. He had to travel long distances in search of water and firewood.
Most young people never to return migrated, fleeing like the moors and hard life.
With other villagers of the place, Jesus Leon in order to green the fields are set. He decided to use a pre-Columbian agriculture techniques taught about indigenous Guatemalans to convert arid land cultivation and wooded areas.
How to carry out the project?
However, reviving an indigenous tool also missed: The tequio, unpaid community work. Nonetheless, it brought together some 400 families of 12 municipalities, created the Center for Integral Campesino Development of the Mixteca (Cedicam); and together, with very limited financial resources, were launched in the great battle against the main culprit for the deterioration: erosion.
Furthermore, in the Mixteca region there are more than 50,000 hectares have lost about five meters of soil from the sixteenth century. Intensive goat farming, overgrazing and lime production industry deteriorated establishing the Cologne area. However, the use of the iron plow and intensive felling of trees for the construction of the imposing temples Dominicans definitely contributed to desertification.
Jesus Leon and his friends drove a reforestation program. A pick and shovel-trenches dug ditches to retain water of low rainfall, planted small trees in nurseries; and planted compost brought alive to prevent the escape of fertile land barriers.
All this favored the aquifer recharge. Then, in a titanic effort, they planted about four million trees of native species acclimated to heat and sober in water absorption.
After the goal of getting to indigenous and peasant community, food sovereignty were set. They developed a system of sustainable and organic farming without pesticides; thanks to the rescue and conservation of seeds, corn, cereal that are native to this region. Sowing especially very own variety of the area, the bowl; which is more resistant to drought. It is planted between February and March; which is there the driest time of the year, with very little moisture in the soil. But when the rains growing rapidly.
After a quarter century; the miracle occurred. Today the high Mixteca is restored. It has become green again. They have more water springs emerged. There are trees and food. And people no longer migrate.
Currently, Jesus Leon and his friends fight against GMOs, and planted 200,000 trees a year.
Every day push back the line of desertification. With the wood of trees has been recovered a craft activity that was disappearing: the development, in family workshops, wooden yokes and utensils in common use.
In addition, they have buried in strategic locations ferro cement tanks, more than 10,000 liters; which also collect rainwater to irrigate greenhouses organic family.
However, the example of Jesus Leon is now imitated by several neighboring community; which have also created community nurseries and temporally organized mass plantings. In a world where news often are negative and depressing; this exemplary history has gone unnoticed.
Understanding that spirituality is the collective consciousness of the soul of our sages and wise.
The history are the tissues of our big house, the universe.
Language is not only a communication link, it is how to act or being, thinking, and feeling.
Art is based on the symbol; which is based on the language of Mother Earth; which is the expression of our spirituality in everyday to do for all our peoples is spirituality.
The economy is an economy with a heart that is not based on individual well-being; she works and works for the community and for her.
Medicine is taken from the pharmacy of nature by establishing a relationship; in which the vegetable, mineral, animal, interact with us in an attitude of respect and gratitude to those realms.
Laws apply according to the social reality of each community; so our spirituality, respects and leaves the expression of the principles and values of each people.
More Funding for Indigenous People
These were RAIS news bulletinas on Aug 2008
However, The World Bank finances only 600 environmental projects worldwide. Of these, 109 of them involving the community of indigenous peoples. However, only 35% of these are of direct support for indigenous organizations are also made via governments. “With this began the conversation with Claudia Sobrevila specialist biodiversity World Bank; ending launching the publication”. The role of indigenous people in the conservation of biodiversity peoples.
To Sobrevila, from a strategic point of view; all sense of indigenous peoples to finance projects aimed at conservation. “The UN declaration of indigenous peoples empty clear recommendations for certification of ancestral territories and support the people”; he argues. In the afternoon yesterday, Claudia participated in a parallel event in the COP9 about GEF and indigenous community; where publication was launched.
Present during the initial negotiations areas; It protected Program Amazonia (ARPA) Sobrevila stressed that the program is one of the few who had the concern to sustain traditional community; are residents in the vicinity of the CUs or in the extractive backup got involved with the harp. However, for her, one of the keys to the success of the program will be made in the management Funbio is why a private institution that guarantees the continuity of the program independent of changes in governments.
Claudia points out that one of the vindications of the native peoples here at COP is that their lands are not suitable in the category of protected areas of IUCN; (International Union for Conservation of Nature). This is because that would mean the need for adaptation of these peoples to the rules of each country for the use of public land. At present 14% of the planet’s surface is 22% protected areas and indigenous lands.
International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity
Monday May 19, 2008 began the Ninth Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity CBD UN in Bonn Germany. RAIS Participated in this forum.
Representatives of 190 countries and the European Union gather in the search for international consensus for the preservation of biodiversity.
More than 500 indigenous representatives from attending to influence proposals in defense of biodiversity. The International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity (IIFB) held its traditional ceremony aperture in conlave room and not in the ofical ceremony due to the rejection of the secretary, this shows once again to the exclusion of indigenous peoples.
Biodiversity and Climate Change
We call for the strengthening of collaboration between the CBD and the UNFCCC on the issue of biodiversity and climate change. So we call on the CBD to take an active role in all discussions of climate change.
However, climate change threatens food security and sovereignty of Indigenous Peoples; even though our contribution to this problem is minimal. We are also concerned that mitigation and adaptation strategies that are being proposed and implemented to address climate change are causing more violations of our rights as indigenous peoples.
These market-based mechanisms; such as CDM (Clean Development Mechanism) and REDD particularly violate our human rights and our resources. We urgently call on developed countries to meet their emission targets of greenhouse gases to reduce the degradation of our biodiversity; upon which we depend for our survival.
Indigenous Peoples are concerned about the continued expansion of protected areas. However, we want recognition of our own territories Condition: indigenous biocultural territories and community conserved areas. We oppose the establishment of new protected areas in indigenous lands and territories until our rights to lands, territories as well as resources are fully recognized and respected.
We urge the parties to the management; monitoring and evaluation of existing protected areas to national law cannot hold. The reason is because virtually all countries fail to ensure the participation of indigenous peoples. We also call on the parties to adopt the recommendation made by the second meeting of the working group on protected areas; to give priority to the implementation of element 2 work program on protected areas.
We further urge the Parties to address the issue of restitution for our lands and territories that have been taken to establish APs without our free; prior and informed consent for Indigenous Peoples can regain control over our lands and territories.
Any proposed international regime on Access and Benefit-sharing should meet the minimum standards set out in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. This means that any regime must recognize, inter alia; that indigenous peoples have rights to our genetic resources; and not just our traditional knowledge associated with genetic resources.
Free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous Peoples must be obtained to access our genetic resources and traditional knowledge. It should recognize and use appropriate terminology ; “indigenous peoples” in the instrument in any international regime enshrined.
Article 8 (j)
Nonetheless, we reiterate that the work program of the Working Group on Article 8 (j); and related provisions is crucial to the successful implementation of the Convention and vital to indigenous peoples. However, we welcome the positive results of the Working Group on Article 8 (j) as the Akwé:. Kon and strongly support the renewal of the approach to complete work items; such as sui generis systems; the ethical code of conduct; and elements of any international regime on ABS related 8j.
Furthermore, we are very concerned that the issues discussed in the Working Group on ABS are undermining the work program of the Working Group on Article 8 (j) and we call on the parties to be respected, preserved and maintained knowledge; innovations and practices of indigenous peoples through a commitment to maintain separate meetings of the working groups on Art. 8 (j) and ABS.
We are very concerned that the proposed elements for the framework of priority programming related to the utilization of GEF resources for the four years from 2010 to 2014; have been prepared without meaningful participation of indigenous peoples; and these can result in violations of the rights of Indigenous Peoples. However, we ask that the GEF (GEF) believes direct funding modalities for programs and projects designed as well as managed at all stages of indigenous peoples.
Furthermore, Mr. President, we express our deep concern that the CBD is funded mechanisms; such as the Fund Adaptation GEF and Carbon Partnership Facility of the World Bank; which are funds that potentially violate the rights of Indigenous Peoples; and do not have adequate standards for the protection of human rights.
Forested agriculture and biodiversity
Subject agricultural biodiversity is crucial to Indigenous Peoples especially in view of aggravating growing global food crisis. We urge States to ensure that indigenous peoples can save, exchange and sell our seeds without restriction.
We also call on States to end with perverse subsidies that harm indigenous peoples and to support food systems of indigenous peoples and small farmers; who protect us from damage to biodiversity that results from industrial agriculture and world trade.
Recognizing the negative impacts of biofuels; we ordered a halt to the production of biofuels; and also ordered an end to genetic modification technologies.
We also demand the Parties and international organizations to give priority to the protection and promotion of indigenous knowledge on agriculture and prohibit the patenting of knowledge and seeds.
With respect to forest biodiversity, we strongly urge the need to resolve and address the issues of land rights, territories and resources as priority issues.
Inland Waters / Invasive Species
Pollution of inland waters, the construction of hydropower plants; the development of extractive activities and artificial diversions of rivers lead to the loss of biodiversity and associated traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples.
Parties need to recognize traditional management practices of water resources and customary rights of indigenous peoples and local community in relation to access to bioresources. Nonetheless, we urge the Parties to support the development of studies on the impacts on biodiversity of inland water pollution and dams; including transboundary waters.
Marine and Coastal Biodiversity / Island Biodiversity
Indigenous peoples possess ancestral knowledge for the sustainable management of our marine eco systems. However, the criteria for management of existing marine protected areas must be consistent with the systemic approach and should include; social, cultural and spiritual elements, traditional, based on free; prior and informed consent and full and effective participation of indigenous peoples.
The term open ocean and deep waters do not have a universally accepted definition and have different interpretations depending on the scientific and legal community and as indigenous peoples. The definitions of these terms should be clarified and indigenous peoples should be included in the definition process.
Community Indicators, the Ecosystem Approach, Implementing NBSAPs
However, he IIFB gives great importance to the Strategic Plan and the 2010 target of CBD; consistent with ensuring that the rights and welfare of indigenous peoples and local community. COP9 Agenda includes; consideration of some practical indicators for assessing progress in the protection of traditional knowledge, innovations as well as practices.
These indicators are the result of a global consultation that culminated in an International Seminar of Experts sobr relevant indicators for Indigenous Peoples; the CBD and the Millennium Development Goals. Moreover, we urge the Parties to take into account these indicators; and use them in the preparation of the 4th National Reports. However, we call on the parties to promote full and effective participation of Indigenous Peoples and local community in developing NBSAPs and monitoring of progress in their implementation.
Communication, Education and Public Awareness in this Community
Nonetheless, Indigenous peoples have prioritized communication; education as well as public awareness (CEPA); as essential components of our work program. We welcome the decision VIII / 6 that calls for the inclusion of representatives of indigenous; and local community in the informal advisory committee and look forward to a fruitful cooperation in the future.
However, the IIFB must play a key role in the implementation of CEPA to ensure that our rights are known and understood; and full and effective participation of Indigenous Peoples are guaranteed. However, we believe that an essential message to be incorporated into all CEPA activities should reflect the key role of indigenous peoples; in the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.
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