Adventure Tags: Indigenous People
Guatemala is a small exotic country in Central America with a diverse geography that includes 33 volcanoes, highland areas, cloud forest, rainforest, and even desert. Guatemala has a unique culture with a large indigenous Mayan population still living much as they have for hundreds of years and with many traditions and beliefs dating back to ancient times. There are 23 different Maya languages spoken in Guatemala. Every village has its own distinctive textile, using colors and symbols particular to their region.
From deserts, to the ice fields and glaciers of “Patagonia”, to vast lakes, the Andes mountain range and fiery snow-capped volcanoes, Chile boasts a great variety of landscapes and a wealth of untouched wilderness. In the north, the driest desert in the world boasts some of the most incredible scenery on earth and has become one of Chile’s most visited tourist locations, with the oasis town of San Pedro de Atacama receiving many foreign visitors all year round. While local tour operators in San Pedro profit hugely from tourism, the majority of the local indigenous people in surrounding villages are still not benefitting from this activity. This program includes voluntary work with an indigenous community who are eager to protect their cultural and historical heritage, maintain and prevent the potential damage from tourism, and create the means to self-sustain their community, now and in the future.
Argentina is famous for its cosmopolitan capital Buenos Aires, tango, the Gaucho cowboys − and its beef! But since the late 90′s, when the currency crashed, it has suffered from extreme poverty, especially in rural areas. Close to the famous Iguazu waterfalls in the north, there are many indigenous communities trying to sustain themselves while holding onto their ancestors` traditions as they struggle to adapt to modern western life. As with indigenous peoples the world over, their traditional habitat in the sub-tropical forest is either being removed or closed off to them, often to make way for forestry, five star hotels, and more. This program involves voluntary work with the Guaraní community to help the social and cultural development of the indigenous community members as well as improve local employment opportunities.