In April 2015 Apiwtxa signed a contract with the Amazon Fund of the National Economic and Social Development Bank (BNDES) to carry out a project to encourage agroforestry management and production by traditional and indigenous communities in the municipality of Marechal Thaumaturgo, Acre. The three-year project will offer sustainable economic alternatives to deforestation, support efforts to monitor and protect lands, and help strengthen local community organizations.
The Alto Juruá Project is the first direct funding arrangement between BNDES and an indigenous association. It was developed and submitted directly by Apiwtxa without governmental or NGO assistance. The project will benefit around 720 indigenous inhabitants of our Terra Indígena do Rio Amônia, a further 600 indigenous residents of the Terra Indígena Kaxinawá-Ashaninka do Rio Breu and 50 communities in the Reserva Extrativista do Alto Juruá.
The three main priorities of the project are:
- advice, training and establishment of agroforestry systems;
- support to indigenous and traditional communities of the Upper Juruá for territorial and environmental management;
- institutional development of community organizations.
Among the activities of the project are the organization of training courses in territorial and environmental management and in project management, the construction of lookouts and of infrastructure for the production and sale of fruit pulps, and interchanges between Ashaninka communities on both sides of the Brazil-Peru border.