We are working in the Colombian Amazon, which covers 483,164 km² corresponding to 42.4% of national land mass. This region, as defined by the Amazon Institute of Scientific Research (SINCHI), is distributed among ten departments, or provinces: the southern part of Vichada; the southeast of Meta; the entire territories of Amazonas, Caquetá, Guainía, Guaviare, Putumayo and Vaupés; the foot of Caucana, and the Amazon slopes of Nariño – the higher part of the Aguarico, Guamuez, San Miguel and Sucio Rivers. Nearly 87,000 indigenous people belonging to 55 ethnic groups inhabit the region, which includes 17 national natural parks, one forestry reserve and 179 indigenous reserves (resguardos).
The work of Gaia Amazonas has focused on the provinces of Amazonas, Guainía and Vaupés. We work with communities and Associations of Traditional Indigenous Authorities (AATIs) who live along the banks of the Apaporis, Caquetá, Guainía, Isana, Mirití, Paraná, Pirá Paraná, Putumayo and Tiquié Rivers. We carry out projects with communities, supporting local processes for organization, environmental governance, life plans, territorial planning, education and health, among others. The scope of the work has reached regional, national and international levels, through funding networks, allies, communities and interested others.
We have formed alliances with National Natural Parks, other State organizations and civil society, with whom we have designed an important conservation strategy. Through alliances and transnational networks, the strategy seeks to consolidate the effective protection of a corridor of indigenous territories and protected areas in the northwest of the Amazon Basin.
The northwest Amazon is located in the Colombian Amazon, the Venezuelan Amazon and the state of Acre, Amazonas and Roraima in the Brazilian Amazon. With Gaia Amazonas, we are aiming at the consolidation of environmental governance processes among indigenous people, governments and civil society, with the application of incentives or compensations for environmental services of the ecosystems in the indigenous reserves and the protected areas, to contribute to the conservation of more than 100,000,000 hectares in the northwest Amazon – Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela – to mitigate the effects of climate change.