The Shuar-Achuar Project

Return to Ecuador

Visit with the Shuar-Achuar People

The Shuar-Achuar Jungle Lodge Project

Shrunken heads to hotel beds – Fundacion Etno Ecologico “Supai” Shuar

During our journey to the Eastern slopes of the Ecuadorian rain forest we were befriended by Don Bosco Pati and his family. As Shuar-Achuar people they come to modernity with a history of “hunter gatherer” and a semi-nomadic jungle life style. The times are a changing.

How do traditional indigenous people transition to a world of e-mail, TV and frozen foods? Simple, create a foundation – Fundacion Etno Ecologico “Supai” Shuar – open a jungle lodge in the rain forest, invite outsiders, and give them a taste of how it is to live in the jungle.

Our friends have done just that. They could use our help.

Go visit them:
While in Ecuador, a wonderfully inexpensive country to visit, go South from Macas and contact Don Bosco for a visit. As a natural healer or Shaman, he is spearheading this effort to insure the viability of his family, their health and their culture. He is there with all 12 kids, 2 wives and the necessary extended family. See our photos.

Donate your development dollars to a good cause:
See the attached budget worked up during our visit in October 2006. Select a category and give till it hurts. Before you donate, do your research and contact Don Bosco to be sure this cause is right for you. Don Bosco does not speak English so if you need help with Spanish translation David can assist.

Tell your friends:
As you read about the rain forest being destroyed think of the Shuar-Achuar as stewards of that forest, doing what they can to sustain their little piece of paradise. Join in partnership with them and support this wonderful effort.

For more information about the Shuar-Achuar, Saraguro and other indigenous peoples of Ecuador see these links.

Contact Don Bosco Pati
+593 (08) 664-6247 cell phone

“In spite of the continual outside penetration and attempts to implant foreign cultures, such as Christianity which have caused a loss of prestige to their myths, or a certain type of tourism that folklorizes their rituals, the “Shuar” maintain many of their cultural values: rich mythology: a kind of encyclopedia of daily knowledge, language, the way at constructing dwellings, the production of utilitarian objects, etc., especially by the inhabitants of the interior of the jungle.

The “Shuar” are a people who merit respect, and even if many of their customs have changed for diverse reasons, they maintain themselves as a group proud of their past and of their present, a true example of the diverse ethnic communities of Ecuador because being “civilized” does not imply casting aside the historic and cultural baggage from which our being originates…”

Excerpt from the Shaur exhibit in the Banco National of Ecuador Ethnic Exhibit in Cuenca, Ecuador.