Community Investment: Capacity Building Partnership with Shuar Federation
The Shuar Nation represents about 80,000 of the one million indigenous peoples in Ecuador. Approximately 5,475 Shuar people live in Zamora-Chinchipe, the region where our Fruta del Norte (FDN) project is located. Within the FDN project area, the nearest Shuar communities are Nankais and Achunts, located approximately 30 and 25 kilometres from the project respectively, and the hunting camps of El Pindal, El Carmen, and La Merced, located 20 kilometres from the project.
These communities are all part of the Shuar Federation of Zamora-Chinchipe, an organization created in 1988 to represent the interests of the associated centres and communities in the province. The Federation strives to ensure that the Shuar Nation actively participates in the region's development process, while preserving the Shuar identity and cultural values.
In 2009, a Co-operation Agreement was signed with the Shuar Federation, setting guidelines for determining which Federation projects would be supported. Designed to improve the quality of life of people in the region, they included strengthening the internal capacity of the Federation and Shuar Nation, investing in community infrastructure projects and economic development activities, and supporting traditional cultural and sporting events. The agreement has been successful in increasing the organizational competency of the Shuar Federation and its 54 communities in Zamora-Chinchipe; improving school, road and water infrastructure; and supporting understanding of Shuar culture. As such, it has provided a strong foundation to reinforce our long-term objective of encouraging the Shuar Nation in its goal of independent development and management of sustainable activities, aligned with their way of life and culture.
"The presence of mining companies will enrich the province through the development of projects. We have developed several agreements with the mining companies and the Shuar people are very grateful for that."
President of Shuar Federation