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With a growing number of COVID-19 cases in Brazil, APE is supporting communities at the edge of the infection in the Amazon. We have partnered with Sateré Mawé Association of indigenous craftswomen who had been unable to sell their work in Manaus due to the lockdown and the decline of tourism.
Based next to the Andirá River, the Sateré Mawé indigenous community is known for being the first to ‘domesticate’ guarana and for maintaining a strong cultural and biological identity. This is reflected in their rituals and sophisticated crafts, made from seeds, grasses and wood from the forest. The story goes that in the 70s, a Sateré Mawé widow decided to move to Manaus as she was unable to hunt and gather enough provisions for her seven daughters, and this led to the creation of four satellite communities in Manaus. Samela Sateré, the fourth generation of craftswomen, is our contact. The craftwork made with seeds from the forest is one of the main life strategies of Sateré Mawé women in the urban area.
APE UK had the opportunity to acquire two months’ crafts production from Sateré Mawé women and had also supported the acquisition of second-hand sewing machines for the production of protective masks to be distributed amongst the edge communities of the region.