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Brazil’s rainforest may be the single most important lung of our planet – its existence matters to us all

Wildfires have been burning unabated in Brazil, threatening the lives of 3 million species of plants and animals, as well as the lives of 1 million indigenous people. Large swaths of rainforest, critical lungs of our planet, are disappearing.

After calling the wildfires an international crisis and vowing to push the issue to the top of the G7 summit agenda, President Macron of France went on, perhaps predictably, to demonstrate the political unwillingness we hear so often from our elected leaders. “We need to find a good governance of the Amazon,” he said. “This means we need to involve NGOs and local populations much more than we do now.”

Macron and other G7 leaders know that the policies of Brazil’s current government incentivize deforestation of the Amazon. Yet governments everywhere seem content to retreat from their core responsibility of protecting the Earth’s life-giving ecosystems, leaving civil society and NGOs like Health In Harmony no choice but to fill the void.

Health In Harmony originally intended to begin our programming in the Brazilian Amazon mid-2020. Events this past week compel us to move even faster.

Xingu homes in Amazon rainforest
Homes of Xingu people in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest.

Our Founder, Kinari Webb, and team just wrapped up our first assessment in four locations. We’ve narrowed our focus down to the indigenous and traditional communities of the Xingu River Basin in Altamira, and are in dialogue with a strong, well-respected Brazilian partner active for many years in this region (see this remarkable video by ISA). We will return to conduct Radical Listening exercises with these indigenous people, in order to define their locally designed solutions to stop deforestation. And then, as quickly as we can, guided by them, we’ll invest in the implementation of their solutions.

We do this work in multiple countries, because it’s more and more critical to protect the rainforest that is left in order to stabilize our climate. But we can’t do it without you and your direct support.

It’s up to us to protect this critical habitat right now. We’ll send out more updates about our timeline to begin work in the Amazon. Please do what you can to help with a donation today.

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