Posted on 03/08/2021
Karina Cipriano Damián, is a nursing technician and promoter of integral farms in the Apurímac River Valley since 2019. Today, on International Women's Day, she tells us a little about the role of Ashaninka women in the communities of the Valley of the Apurímac River.
How do women participate in the conservation and maintenance of forests?
Women play an essential role in guaranteeing the protection of ecosystems, especially now that we have once again put the conservation of forests, which provide us with food and medicine, a priority. During the pandemic, we have not had much difficulty in survival, since in our community we take advantage of the different foods that flora and fauna offer us in a sustainable way. I have been working with the objective of combating and reducing malnutrition in the communities. I have been rescuing some species, so that the children of the community can feed with them, since it is very important for their development and thus they can perform in their studies.
Has the work women have in the community increased this year?
In 2020, the number of women working in integral farms has increased, since they have understood that it is important to conserve forests, take care of the environment and keep integral farms in operation. More women have come to join in the work of the integral farms and interest has increased, especially in the Sankiroshi Native Community. In 2021 we continue trying to attract more mothers who want to be part of the operation of the farms. In the Native Sampantuari community, we are just recruiting some beneficiary mothers, as they are only gradually realizing the importance of food in the area. In addition, together with Sangamo, a promoter specialized in reforestation, the women of the communities have also begun to work together with him. We have been able to give of our time, despite the difficulties, since we consider that reforestation for the construction of houses and food is essential. Before, only men were engaged in reforestation, but now that we need more resources, women are beginning to work together with their partners in Comunidad Nativa de Marontoari. It is for this reason that women have been playing a more important role in the pandemic, both in integral farms and in reforestation, their interest has increased, for example, now seven more women are joining these activities.
Tell us about your learning experience together with the women of the community
We have been able to learn about caring for the environment and forests, we know that we have a very important role in their conservation, since these resources give us food, they give us oxygen and they also give us medicinal plants that we can use to heal ourselves from diseases. . I would like all the mothers of the communities to be integrated. What I would like, in the year that I have left, is to reach more mothers the message of the importance of their active participation in our communities, especially now that we are going through a pandemic and food may become scarce. When you don't have money you don't have to buy, but here, having our natural products, we can survive. I recently had a workshop in the Native Community of Kiroshariato, I worked with the mothers and prepared a variety of food with the crops that they had brought for the workshop, which made them more encouraged to participate in the activities of the farms. I am happy that I have been able to support them in the preparation and teach them the nutrients of each food.
In this time of pandemic, is there an increase in the number of women I grow them?
Many have increased, during the pandemic, new planting activities with the products we are working with. They want to plant for their own consumption since the price of coffee and cocoa has dropped. It is important for us to have our own food to plant and work, their objectives have changed and little by little reforestation and sowing becomes more important, especially in these times of the worm (COVID-19).
What is the greatest contribution that women are making in the communities? What is your contribution to women in the community?
Your participation in the integral farm is the most important thing. As a promoter I help them to classify the food and to know how to prepare it, what can be combined so that the growth and development of our daughters and sons is better. There are three communities that already know that they can work with me, I explain to them and I tell them that they are not sowing for sowing. In addition, there is an additional value, since in our plantings we do not use fertilizers, we do not use chemicals, or commercial fertilizer, we are sowing naturally. We do not need to go to buy commercial products with our own food.
Any message for International Women's Day?
For Women's Day, I hope that in all the communities we have more and more beneficiaries every year, it is important to raise awareness about the importance of natural foods and our work in integral farms and in reforestation. Our work is very important so that future generations continue to make sustainable use of the resources that the place where we live gives us.