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Building Resilience Among the Yanomami

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We are raising funds for an expedition to Yanomami territory in the Amazon rainforest. Our mission is to advance fundamental research in the human microbiome space, and to promote projects that foster resilience, self-determination, and indigenous rights for the Yanomami people.

Your donation will become a key component of a legacy that will help preserve the great Amazon and its inhabitants, as well as promoting discovery research across unknown frontiers in microbiology and health.

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In the face of their modern day challenges, the Yanomami people need our help in acquiring the skills and resources necessary for their survival. Your contribution will have a profound and lasting impact as it will directly fund these projects:

Installing solar-powered satellite communication at the Yanomami schools. This system will increase disease surveillance and facilitate projects in intercultural education and sharing of information.

Carry out microbiome research that will help us understand the unique relationship between the microbes and human health and development. Set ethical precedence by including indigenous peoples as research partners and benefactors of scientific research.

Deliver the region's first fully electric outboard motors that can be charged by solar panels. This will increase the efficacy of the Yanomami schools, facilliate transport of patients to clinics, and decrease the region's dependency on fossil fuels.

Document and digitally preserve age old Yanomami traditions amd mythologies. We will work with the Yanomami leaders to help ensure that their wisdoms of the rainforest are never forgotten.

 

WHAT IS THE GOOD PROJECT?

A 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded by David Good in 2013. We are a highly specialized, field-based international team with decades of experience working with indigenous peoples in the Amazon. We are dedicated to the protection of the Amazon rainforest, advancing research in the human microbiome space and global health, and the promotion of intercultural programs that build resilience, self-determination, and sustainable lifestyles for the Yanomami.

Through our collaboration with Yanomami communities we carry out projects that meet specific goals and needs.  With each expedition we document and learn more about the Yanomami culture leading to stronger and more trusting relationships with their communities. Our deep respect and admiration for their way of life inspires us to do whatever we can to preserve it. And that includes sharing our gained knowledge, wisdoms, and experiences with you. 

WHO ARE THE YANOMAMI?

They are an indigenous people that subsist mostly by hunting-gathering and simple horticulture. Their territory spans across the southeastern Venezuelan and northwestern Brazilian border within the Amazon rainforest. Historically, they have been known for maintaining their traditional way of life, but more recently, their microbiome linked to their health status is earning them increasing popularity. Many experts contend that there are villages that remain completely isolated .

Since sustained Western contact first began in the 1950s, the Yanomami have been confronting the spread of novel infectious diseases, invasion of illegal of gold miners, and engagement with complex political and economic policies that affect their ancestral way of life.

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The Yanomami benefactors of our projects live in a region known as the Upper Orinoco of Venezuela. These communities are at the interface of practicing traditional customs while navigating their rapidly evolving integration with the national society. The Yanomami critically need support to protect their way of life and maintain the health and welfare of the more vulnerable, less frequently contacted communities of the interior.

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OUR IMPACT

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YANOMAMI HEALTH

Communities on the front lines of disease outbreaks are critical in saving lives as well as protecting the more vulnerable and isolated communities. Limited resources and lack of reliable communication puts many communities at risk of devastating epidemics including Covid-19.

Our projects will enhance monitoring of Yanomami health situations leading to improved disease surveillance and medical response times, as well as limit the spread of infectious through culturally sensitive public health training and workshops. Furthermore, our support will facilitate reliable emergency transportation of patients and medical personnel to outpatient clinics.

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MICROBIOME RESEARCH

A major part of our mission is to support research in the microbiome space. The Yanomami traditional way of life, with their healthy diet and active lifestyles, may play an important role in shaping their highly diverse microbiome. We have a particular focus on Yanomami communities that have not been adversely affected by exposure to antibiotics, processed foods, industrial toxins, and pollutants.These are all stressors that negatively affect the integrity and diversity of the microbes that evolved to keep us heatlhy.

With increasing rates of chronic inflammatory diseases across the world, our work will is a key driver of discovery research across unknown frontiers in microbiology and health. Furthermore, this research will advance our mission to preserve the biological diversity of the Amazon.


With the checkered history of bio-piracy and exploitation of indigenous peoples, we set out to establish important precedence in ethical research by including the Yanomami people as research partners and active participants. Most importantly, our work sits on the strong foundation of building relationships with our partner communities.

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INTERCULTURAL & BILINGUAL EDUCATION

The Yanomami face unique threats and challenges to their traditional knowledge and wisdom, environment, and way of life. Since the 1970s, these programs integrate their culture and belief systems while providing them valuable tools to achieve self-representation and self-determination

In collaboration with local leaders, our work will advance the Yanomami people's right to have access to intercultural education by enhancing infrastructure and telecommunication, developing projects that raise awareness on conservation and the dangers of environmental degradation.  

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INNOVATION & SUSTAINABILITY

Advanced, innovative, zero-emissions technologies help us accomplish our objectives that require complex energy needs. We continue to build programs and infrastructure that minimize the output of harmful pollutants and toxins.

Our work will help decrease the region’s dependency on gasoline and other fossil fuels as well as facilitate critical research and medical programs by sharing resources with the Yanomami people and other support groups. We will help build intercultural and international trust with the Yanomami communities as we all work towards achieving the same goals.

EXPEDITION LEADERS

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David Good
Lead Coordinator

Biologist and founder of the Good Project. His research focuses on characterizing the human microbiome of Yanomami communities. He is a member of the Irokai-teri community where his Yanomami mother and family reside. 

Hortensia Caballero-Arias
Coordinator

Anthropologist and President of the Good Project. Her work focused on cultural and political transformations, politics of identity, historical anthropology, and indigenous rights among Amazonian peoples. She has worked among the Yanomami for nearly 30 years. 

Lewis Cardozo
Assistant Coordinator

Anthropologist and expedition assistant for the Good Project. He was trained in archeology at the Universidad Central de Venezuela. His field experience includes working and researching with indigenous  Amazonian populations.

Yanomami Intercultural & Bilingual Schools
 

These schools were established in response to Yanomami communities confronting novel challenges in health, economy, politics, and cultural preservation. Founded by the Salesian Mission, they successfully built and maintained an infrastructure that supports over 1,000 Yanomami students.

Do you have any questions?

Interested in sponsoring our next expedition or learning more about our work? Send a message below or email at contact@jointhegoodproject.org 

Thank you. We will reach out shortly.

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a 501(c) 3 non-profit

EIN: 46-3975975