Amazonia Foundation

Posts Tagged ‘michael stuart ani’

An Open Letter From The Founder of the Amazonia Foundation


The Amazonia Foundation was formed in response to a series of epidemics that broke out in Venezuela’s Amazon rain forest during the rainy season of 1987. The epidemics were the result of a gold rush in Brazil that brought a flood of infected miners across the remote jungle border and into the Yanomami homeland. At the time, the Yanomami were considered the last intact tribal nation on earth and their remote location made administering outreach medical aid difficult. Years of experience in the region and close relationships with the tribes gave the founders of the Amazonia Foundation a unique opportunity to help bridge the gap of trust between the Yanomami and those who came to help them. Over the course of twelve years the Foundation worked in the field with the Venezuelan government and international teams of doctors who fought to bring the deadly plagues under control.

During the twelve years the foundation was active in Venezuela fighting the epidemics, both botanical and western medicine played an important role. With the ongoing destruction of the Amazon Rain forest, the plants and healers of the region are now under constant attack. Yet without tribal healers and the vast plant pharmacy available in the jungle, many of the medicines used by the doctors who came to help the Yanomami would never have been discovered.

The Amazonia Foundation remains dedicated to advancing the use of botanical cures to not only help the indigenous people of the Americas, but also to help share this knowledge with the broader community in a way that is respectful to the integrity and wisdom of the tribal people of the Amazon region. The foundation’s mission is firmly grounded in the belief that the health of the world depends upon us all and that medicinal plants are key to our future as a species.

— Michael Stuart Ani