I traveled with a group of doctors, NGOs and professors from the University of Piura to Urakusa in the Alto Marañón of Peru. After a two hour ride on a Russian transport plane and an hour and a half in a canoe we finally arrived at the village of Urakusa. This area is populated by the indigenous Aguaruna people.
The Aguaruna (or Awajún) are an indigenous people of the Peruvian jungle. Historically, they lived primarily on the banks of the Marañón River, a tributary of the Amazon in northern Peru near the border with Ecuador. Currently, they possess titled community lands in four of Peru's regions: Amazonas, Cajamarca, Loreto, and San Martin. According to Peru's 1993 Census the Aguaruna numbered approximately 45,000. World Census data for 2000 lists their population at just over 38,000.
The people of this region speak Aguaruna which is a language completely separate from spanish. The school system begins with Aguaruna only; as the students progress, Spanish is gradually added. This language can be heard being spoken at the beginning of the video.
The mission was designed give medical treatment to the residents and to create a sustainable development plan for the region.
A special thanks to Group 8 of the Peruvian Air Force for the transportation and also a special thanks to Shuar Velásquez, a member of the indigenous peoples and Awajún Wampis, and philosopher by training.
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Shuar Velásquez - Asociación Civil Tendiendo Puentes email@example.com