We are at the beginning of the long-term impact this project will have, but already we are seeing positive results in raising awareness of the Ese’Eja peoples’ challenges and the need for conservation.
Since its grand opening at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, the Ancestral Lands of the Ese’Eja: The True People exhibit has traveled to 12 locations across the United States and has been welcomed at colleges, universities, museums, Longwood Gardens, and the Peruvian Embassy in Washington, D.C. Dozens of classes across the country have engaged in first-hand educational tours of the exhibition and have learned from the Ese’Eja’s wisdom. At the end of 2019’s tour, the exhibit will have been experienced by nearly one million people.
The exhibit, Ancestral Lands of the Ese’Eja: The True People book, and donations will have raised more than $33,000 for the Ese’Eja Community Development fund managed by ACEER. This fund gets divided among the Ese’Eja villages in support of initiatives each village determines is necessary.
Educational resources brought into the region where the Ese’Eja live have varied widely, but each tool focuses on empowering people for conservation. For example, collapsible and environmentally friendly microscopes have been distributed to help local people identify the health of their waterways. More than 2,500 kids have been reached with educational programs.