About Us

What We Do

We are forming a new alliance of global citizens committed to the preservation of the Amazon Rainforest and Indigenous knowledge through direct collaboration and partnership with the Yawanawa tribe and other groups in Brazil.

About the yawanawa

Stewards of the Amazon Rainforest, protecting and preserving its ecosystems and natural medicines

Yawanawá means “People of the Wild Boar,” and according to traditional stories, their history dates back 10,000 years, inhabiting in the same region of the Brazilian Amazon for millenia.
 
In the late 19th century, the first contact with western society was made. Rubber planters invaded, claimed to own the land, and enslaved the people. This initial contact introduced diseases the Yawanawá had no immunity to, in addition to substances that caused diseases the Yawanawá Pajés were unfamiliar with and couldn’t cure. Nearly 90% of the population was lost and for generations, the Yawanawá have struggled to keep their identity and community intact.
 
Today there are approximately 800 Yawanawá living in 8 Villages along the Rio Gregório.

Our Team

Bahar Ghafelehbashi

TORONTO, CANADA

Samantha Seabrook

TORONTO, CANADA

Biography

Joanna Simundic

VANCOUVER, CANADA

Soheil Samimi

VANCOUVER, CANADA

Jordao Souza

SALVADOR, BRAZIL

Angelique Watson

SALVADOR, BRAZIL

Devyn Brugge

VANCOUVER, CANADA

Katey Asaph

VANCOUVER, CANADA

How It Began

Connections

A reunion of those who had visited the Yawanawa prior to 2019 (and some who had not!) makes way for a fundraising idea.

February 2019

Mutum Village, Brazil

A group of women travel to the Yawanawa tribal village of Mutum in the remote Brazilian rainforest. Their journey is healing and inspiring—Joanna starts a Facebook fundraiser when she returns and raises over $5,000 for the village!

July 2019

Vancouver, Canada

We invited Paulo Roberto Silva e Souza, one of the foremost English speaking authorities on the psycho-spiritual work of Amazonian communities, and several of the women from the 1st Women's retreat in Mutum, to speak at our first fundraising event about the Yawanawa, raising awareness about their story in the Amazon.

August 2019

Toronto, Canada

Several of the women who went on the retreat decide to host a second event in Toronto, also featuring Paulo Roberto Silva e Souza, amplifying the cause for preservation of life further!

September 2019

COVID-19

The travel emergency stemming from the global pandemic strands a youth group of Yawanawa. We raised the funds to help get them back home. It's decided we must keep fundraising! We begin forming a new alliance of volunteers and partners.

March 2020

Communities
Where We Work

Our Story

We are a grassroots network of global citizens moving forward Indigenous-led solutions