KEY FACTS

LOCATION

The community of Chipaota is located in the upper Amazon basin adjoining the northwestern border of Cordillera Azul National Park in Northern Peru.

POPULATION

The Mushuk Llacta de Chipaota (Chipaota) community belong to a Quechaun ethnic group known as Lamista, who represent a unique portion of Peru’s indigenous population. The community consists of 130 families and about 1,200 people.

THREATS

Over-use of natural resources that had negative impact on the forest.

PROJECT PLAN

We have developed and implemented a business model for the women in the community to produce and market traditional handicrafts made from natural forest resources, through Allima Waska, a women-owned business group.

The indigenous community of Chipaota is located in the upper Amazon basin adjoining the northwestern border of Cordillera Azul National Park in Northern Peru. The community comes under the district of Chazuta in the San Martín Province. The local population is predominantly Lamista, a Quechuan ethnic group that represents a unique portion of Peru’s indigenous population.

As with most Amazonian indigenous communities, the women in the community of Chipaota historically made baskets with vines, fibers, and seeds from the forest for use in everyday activities.

With the onset of the palm fiber project, community members also identified an economic opportunity in the commercialization of their traditional forest handicrafts, sourced from natural forest resources such as vines, fibers and seeds.

In 2009, the community requested Rainforest Partnership’s assistance for the development and implementation of such a project, that would go beyond the sales of these products in neighboring communities and have more outreach in larger population centers including Tarapoto. We worked with the women in the community to create the Allima Waska artisan group, through which the women can produce and market traditional baskets and bags.

Over the last few years, we have worked with this women’s group to make their products more unique and distinctive in order to create a product line that buyers will recognize as being made in Chipaota and to ensure a competitive edge over others offering similar products. In order to achieve this, we have been conducting series of workshops addressing business management skills, quality control and improved artisan techniques. This project has acted as an important source of empowerment for the women, because it has provided them with their own income source that values their knowledge and skills.

PROJECT OBJECTIVES

Hold meetings and conduct workshops to strengthen Allima Waska group

Finish the construction of the artisan house to include additional work rooms and ecologically sustainable dry toilets for visitors and customers

Develop business plan for promoting the sale of the handicrafts in bigger city centres including US

Introduction of ecotourism and related activities as an added source of income

                      DID YOU KNOW?

                             The Cordillera Azul National Park is home to 4,000 to 6,000 plant species, more than 500 bird species, over 80 reptile and amphibian species, and more than 70 kinds of mammals.

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