Nee Apaneka

The Waorani have suffered great losses since petroleum was discovered in their territory 50 years ago. Roads, illegal logging, and concessions have put the Wao way of life and risk: massacres, internal conflict, the loss of food supplies, and astronomical rates of teen suicide have been heavy blows to dwindling Wao communities.

The Amazon is littered with NGO projects that start with big ideas, and seek to use indigenous communities to implement them, but we wanted to try something different. In seeking to help the community, we met with a Waorani organizers and asked what they needed most of all. Their answer: Nee Apaneka. Nee Apaneka means “communication” in Waorani, and the name of our collaborative project to strengthen Amazonian voices.

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