"Rowing in keel towards the sacred lagoons of Ñakomasira": around 100 young rowers will travel for 4 days through the historical and sacred places of our grandparents, acquiring wisdom and knowledge.
The initiative, promoted by the Siekopai indigenous people, which is an integral part of UDAPT, consists of rowing along a 4-day course that will take participants to know the historical and sacred places of the Siekopai nation, through activities such as encounters between elders, yage ceremonies and exchange of knowledge and experiences. The group will reach the Ñakomasira lagoons, one of the most significant places for the Siekopai Nation.
The context of this trip has two goal: firstly, the idea is to transmit the historical memory of the Siekopai nationality to the new generations. Considering the great territorial extension of this people, the Siekopais have been historically mobile, so for them rowing, keels and moving along rivers are very important elements at the center of their culture. In addition, part of the trip will consist of rediscovering historical and gastronomic traditions such as cassava and farine, products that can last for long time during extended journeys. For this reason, during the tour, the group will stop in historical and sacred places and communities, where the grandparents will transmit myths, stories and memories of struggle and resistance to the young people.
The second objective of this trip is to enforce the territorial rights of the Siekopai nation in the area of Lagarto Cocha. Since 1993, the representatives of this people have been protagonists of a struggle in order to have their ancestral territory recognized by the State of Ecuador. The current Minister of the Environment has pledged to support the nationality, but has done so verbally. The word, especially for Amazonian indigenous peoples such as the Siekopai, has always been fundamental: in this sense, they have welcomed the Minister's words and are already moving to mark and demarcate their ancestral territory. For this reason, this trip also represents a territorial claim, for which there is the idea of signing an agreement between the nationality and the Minister of the Environment. The purpose is to put pressure on the State with the support of the new generation, which is the third and in some cases the fourth to assume this struggle, a transgenerational struggle for the territorial rights of the Siekopai nation that has to be carried forward by the youth.
In conclusion, the message we want to give is on the one hand internal to the nationality, to encourage young people and transmit knowledge and historical memory and, on the other hand, to demand and pressure the Ecuadorian state to finally recognize the ancestral territory Siekopai.
Our past is a lamp at the entrance to the future: without maintaining our history, our traditions and without knowing where we come from, we will also lose our future. For this reason, initiatives such as this trip are fundamental and represent a beacon of hope not only for the Siekopai nationality, but also for all indigenous cultures that bring a heritage of incalculable and invaluable value to the world that we cannot lose.
“Losing the past is losing the future"