Host organization: YAKUM
Location: Tena, Napo, Ecuador
YAKUM is an Amazonian NGO working in 20 Cofan, Siekopai, Shuar, and Kichwa indigenous communities of Ecuador. This is a unique region having extremely high cultural and biodiversity. YAKUM establishes species-rich "food forests," regenerating poor soils, monitoring, and food processing, and they also train and develop youth and women’s groups to empower them to achieve their dreams.
As an intern, you'll gain hands-on experience in reforestation with ancestral Amazonian food and medicinal plants. This includes nursery work with saplings, producing first class soil substrate, geo-referencing and preparing planting areas, and carrying out planting work and maintenance in collaboration with indigenous communities.
You'll also research the indigenous peoples of Ecuador, including their history, food and medicinal plants, nutrition status, and the properties of plants which may be key to improving family nutrition.
If you are motivated, Kichwa private language classes can be paid for on your own in Cotacachi and taken before or after internship hours, you may also apply for partial funding of language classes from LACS.
All Global Interns receive an award totaling at least $3,000 for airfare, transportation, and living expenses. A portion of the stipend may be paid directly to the in-country host to support housing, food, and local transportation.