Amachay means Defend in Quechua, indigenous language of the Andes.
Yumi means Water in Awajún, indigenous language of lowland Marañón Amazon.
Like the name, we will connect Andes with Amazon in a floating festival to protect the rivers that are the lifeblood of the planet. While the lawyers are battling in the capital, River people will be paddling, artists creating, musicians playing, photographers shooting, journalists writing, videographers grabbing and local people united in this fiesta to create the push needed for Peru to protect the Primary Source of the Amazon.
We will make our way down 1600km of river; creating over 20 public events in riverside villages and towns . Through this tour we will capture the personal story of the River, and the way that hundreds of thousands of people interact with her. There will be fiestas in dozens of riverside communities; at each event local people will be invited add to a gigantic artwork.
“At the base of a glacier in the Cordillera Huayhuash where the Marañòn is born, an elder living beside Laguna Carhuacocha will place the first a painted handprint on a giant canvas. Throughout the tour, people who are connected to this river will add their own handprints to form a gigantic river of hands, and so this artwork will grow to reflect the number and diversity of people who are a part of this waterway.”
2020 is the year we stop the dams on the Maranon River and promote long term protections for rivers in Peru. It is a critical time as certifications have already expired and dam builders are on the back foot. With the right pressure in the right places, this is our opportunity to put the final nails in the coffin.
What are we calling for?
- The Peruvian Government needs to publicly cancel contracts for the Chadin II and Veracruz Dams. The environmental certifications for these projects have already expired, so it is not legal for those companies to begin construction.
- The Peruvian Government with support from Indigenous Groups, Civil society and Environmental NGO’s need to create legislation to protect Peru’s most important waterways, and utilise this legislation so that the Marañón is protected as a critical link between Andes and Amazon.
How can you help?
Simple. Join the party! Your presence alone will help to boost fiestas and bring good vibes in all moments on the tour; with this we can create a splash in the media which will help to cancel dam plans. It is not everyday that a floating flotilla passes through remote Peruvian villages where foreigners and locals alike can join in celebration of free rivers!
If you have other ways to contribute even better! Perhaps you have a camera and can help generate media? Perhaps you are a writer and would like to share you experiences? Maybe you are a dancer that can help get the party started? If you are an artist excited to create a message to protect the rivers, we would love to hear from you! Maybe your a DJ who will make sure every event has the perfect soundtrack.
Whatever your skill, bring it on tour and help Amachay Yumi.