DEAR FRIENDS & PARTNERS
UPDATED ON: January 15, 2021
We wish you all the best for 2021!
The current global situation forced us to temporarily shut down operations in March 2020. Fortunately, Kapawi was able to restart welcoming guests in late December 2020, and we look forward to a gradual recovery in 2021.
Kapawi took advantage of these last months to review and improve its travel experience. We have been adapting to a post-Covid reality, where our ecolodge will not only be a destination for responsible adventurous travelers, but it will also serve as a hub to connect different stakeholders and audiences with the Amazon Rainforest and its Achuar communities.
The Achuar communities and families were heavily impacted by COVID, especially in areas such as education, health, food security, and alternative production systems. This prompted us to look at Kapawi’s new role as a promoter and creator of additional community projects to support the Achuar. These projects also enhance our travel experience, creating more opportunities for visitors to engage with community experiences and projects.
We reinforced our work with our historic partners, and also started working with other NGOs, Academia, and friends of Kapawi. These new collaboration lines have allowed us to implement new community projects in the following lines:
Kapawi increased its cooperation and collaboration with the local TUNA High School in the community of Kapawi. Under this agreement, we will work permanently with Senior students to help them gain knowledge and experience in Kapawi’s areas of operation, as well as to include them in conservation and sustainable development projects.
Fish farming with native species in all 6 surrounding Achuar communities. We will work closely with Fundacion Pachamama to implement a new project financed by the Lion’s Share Fund. This will help the communities improve their food security goals while also enhancing the local production for the tourism value chain.
Vanilla production. Surprisingly, with the help of researchers, we discovered wild vanilla plants in the grounds of the High School in Kapawi. This great news has allowed us to design a project for future vanilla production. We expect this to become a significant community enterprise and a source of income for local families, as well as a new experience for our future guests at the ecolodge.
Native wild cocoa and hot pepper production. These are two traditional crops in the Achuar chacra, or garden. We are currently designing an alternative agroforestry system for these crops, to implement complementary and additional sources of income for local Achuar families.
Forest Conservation and monitoring. Kapawi has many emblematic wildlife species, and probably pink river dolphins are one of the most prominent and visible species. We will increase our work with conservation partners to expand the role of travel as a key tool for conservation, while generating local capacity for future forest monitoring and management.
Although this has been a very challenging time, Kapawi Ecolodge looks forward to providing an improved and enhanced authentic and unique experience of the Amazon and the Achuar culture.
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We look forward to seeing you at Kapawi!
The Kapawi Team
Photos: December 2020 trip to Kapawi.