Video / Audio - Livelihoods and Culture
The Misak are an indigenous people whose territories are located in Cauca, Colombia. As with many indigenous peoples in Latin America, the Misak lost large parts of their territory during colonial rule. In the 1970s, they started a process of land reclamation and were eventually successful in gaining formal land rights recognition. Since then the Misak developed Plan de Vida as a tool for self-determined development to ensure their gains would be preserved for future generations.
What are the benefits of secure tenure for indigenous peoples, for the environment and for wider society? This video is part of the 'Territories of Life' toolkit, a series of 10 short videos that share stories of resistance, resilience and hope with communities on the frontline of the global rush for land. The Territories of Life toolkit is being shared freely with thousands of communities around the world whose territories are central to their way of being.
This film documents the gathering of indigenous educators from across Indonesia and the Philippines in Kaseputan Ciptegalar, West Java. They discussed the problems: “The existing education system teaches ‘ilmu pergi’ - the science of leaving.” (Sarno Maulana, Pasawahan school, West Java). And they developed a vision of the future: "It is important for us to start our own education - our indigenous education. So we are the ones who determine its methods, we are the ones who determine its contents, and all of this within our territory.” (Jhontoni Tarihoran, BPAN)
This vibrant animation from The Gaia Foundation and animator Ben Pearce takes us on two very different journeys through the water cycle. One shows the life-giving nature of water for everything from forests to frogs. The other reveals the ways in which mining is damaging the water cycle, putting life itself in jeopardy. The Gaia Foundation website, gaiafoundation.org, contains many reports written on the extractive industries and their effect on ecosystems, indigenous peoples livelihoods and the future of the natural cycles of this planet.
Based on Dadang Pohon Tua’s song, “Siapa Lagi Kalau Bukan Kita” (“If not us then who”), each singer sings the chorus in their mother tongue language. Their message is clear: Speak your mother tongue with pride!
West and Central Africa. This video provides a window onto the reality of women-led artisanal palm oil production, a reality often rendered invisible in narratives of global industrial palm oil. This model is under threat by the rapid advance of industrial plantations, free trade agreements and corporate-controlled value chains at the expense of community-based food systems. (To activate the English subtitles in the video below, click on "CC" at the bottom-right.) (Grain / 2016)
The Brazilian government is planning to build a vast number of big dams on the rivers around the Amazon Rainforest, destroying biodiversity and disrupting the way of life of thousands of Amerindians and local populations. Now that the work is well under way on the huge Belo Monte dam, on the Xingu river, the government is pushing ahead with its next big project - a series of dams on the Tapajós river. But 12,000 Munduruku Indians, long feared as warriors, live here and are fighting back. This documentary, filmed in late 2013 and early 2014, looks at life in a Munduruku village, where traditional skills are practised and children are brought up with remarkable freedom. It documents the growth of resistance, even among the women, not traditionally fighters, some of whom are emerging as guerreiras (woman warriors). This video was produced independently, with the support of some organizations in the UK, such as LAB and Lipman Miliband Trust, Munduruku leaders and their local supporters. The post-production process was made thanks to collaborative and solidarity work. (Nayana Fernandez 2014)
Revival, a film from MELCA Ethiopia and The Gaia Foundation, follows a meeting of African Sacred Natural Site Custodians in the stunning highlands of Bale, Ethiopia. There they gathered to celebrate MELCA Ethiopia's ten years working to revive Sacred Natural Sites and customary law in Ethiopia, to exchange knowledge, stories and experiences. Featuring interviews with Sacred Natural Site Custodians and Earth Jurisprudence practitioners and vibrant footage from Ethiopia's unique highland ecology, Revival takes us to the heart of efforts to regenerate biocultural diversity and restore a respectful relationship with Earth in Africa (The Gaia Foundation, 2015).
The Kichwa tribe in the Sarayaku region of the Amazon in Ecuador believe in the ‘living forest’, where humans, animals and plants live in harmony. They are fighting oil companies who want to exploit their ancestral land. A delegation of indigenous people are at the Paris COP21 climate conference to make sure their voices are heard. Can they win their battle? (The Guardian, 2015).
A short film by Lazar Konforti (losdespojados.tumblr.com) showing the resilience of the indigenous Maya-Q'eqchi' community of Lote Ochoa community. They were violently evicted from their land in 2007 by private security forces in the employ of Canadian multinational mining company HudBay Minerals, backed by Guatemalan police and military personnel, but have since regrouped and re-built their homes. (www.rightsaction.org)