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Culture and Conservation


The music of the region known as the MUSICA DEL PACIFICO DEL SUR DE COLOMBIA Y NORTE DE ECUADOR is a unique type of music from these 2 countries that had been declared as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, by UNESCO.

While in Colombia, this musical expression has remained almost intact, as most of the forest, in Ecuador it has been disappearing in Ecuador at the same time as the rain forest disappears. This is due to the expansion of deforestation and monoculture production of various crops from large companies that had brought people from other regions and imposed their culture over the local one contributing to the loss of the heritage of the area.        

We have concluded that by helping to maintain the traditions and local culture, people become aware of the importance of protecting their environment. Otherwise, they would lose the source of materials to build their instruments or they would lose their natural surroundings to which they sing to.

By paring culture and conservation the difficult and lonely work of doing conservation would be rather dried and less colorful. We have partner in this endeavor with various important musicians of the Colombian Pacific Region, such as Nidia Gongora of Canalon de Timbiqui, Maritza Bonilla, Hugo Candelario Gonzalez de Bahia Grupo, Alexis Montano de Remanso Pacifico, Juan Carlos MIndinero and others. Together with them, we present workshops and exhibits of our cultural and conservation efforts.

I became aware of this fact many years ago, but only in recent years, I was financially able to start a school of music of this region for children from 6 to 15 years old, in order to recuperate their cultural expression.

The needs are still big. We hope to build a permanent place, where they can practice the dance and the instruments playing. We have few instruments. But still we need more, so more children can learn. The instruments that we have now were donated by Scott Rasmussen, founder of ESPN channel.
Also, we have a teacher of dance, but it is difficult to gather her monthly salary of 400 US Dollars.

The music teachers come from Colombia and our hope is that our children would be able to go to learn more in Colombia where the culture is still intact, so they can earn the experience of sharing musical moments with other children, and be exposed to a broader cultural movement where they belong, but for now they have lost it.

Our goal is to not let the culture die in the Community of El Cabuyal in Ecuador and instead flourish again within the children and be preserve forever and perhaps create dancers and musicians that can make a living with their knowledge.

So far, we have 10 permanent children at the school, but we would love to include more children form the same community and the nearby ones, if we had enough materials and space. Their families are very poor and have lost their land in most of the cases due to corruption of wealthy people from somewhere else. I fact, the land of El Cabuyal where their houses are located, do not belong to them anymore after a corrupted deal between a parson from the city and the local officials, year ago.

Malecon Julio Izurieta  - Puerto Lopez- Manabi
Carrera 6ta 3-30 Barrio San Antonio, - Cali  Valle de Cauca
English, Spanish and Portuguese spoken
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