This pandemic has hit us all in different ways, to some worse than others, but it is exactly now that we need to stand tall, reach out and support one another. Some values that were once long forgotten are coming back; new times, new realizations, new goals and a new way of living is what awaits us all.
When organized communities face a problem or need, that is, to transform their reality and it is essential to trace a path; make decisions about how to resolve that situation and how to make better use of resources to do so. That is when we know, it requires raising a project.
For this reason, Adventure Journeys undertook the search for new alliances in our country, with the purpose of teaching, growing, changing, daring and giving. These alliances are not commercial, nor for profit, they are ties created with a common goal: exposing a different reality, the Ecuadorian reality. We have had the delight of meeting enterprising people, and above all, lovers of what they do. So please join us and we will tell you about one of our projects in Pijal.
The community of Pijal is located in the northern Andean area of Ecuador, in the southern part of the province of Imbabura, on the border with the province of Pichincha. It belongs to the Canton Otavalo, González Suárez parish, and is located about 95 km north of the city of Quito.
When speaking of the origin of the Pijal community, exact dates cannot be given of its conformation or its foundation, but it goes back to the times of the formation of the Cayambi - Caranqui Confederation, that is, before the presence of the Incas and the Spanish.
More and more tourists visit Otavalo, so it is important to implement the SACHA WARMIKUNA project, to publicize the indigenous culture, customs, traditions and worldview that is reflected in their tissues. This being a letter of introduction for national and foreign tourists to be motivated to visit the Pijal community.
Sacha Warmikuna, and its founders, women, Rocio Inlago, Carmen Imbaquingo and Beatriz Perugachi, together with the sponsorship of AJ, created the project in a difficult time such as the one we live today, The crisis of the pandemic plus the machista culture, make it more difficult for women to find a source of employment, and education. A project led by women whose main motivation is to have an alternative to support and sustain their home These three women create this opportunity and materialize it by showing this incredible project Sacha Warmikuna is an association of entrepreneur’s independent, that will be passed on from legacy to legacy the art of weaving, making handmade scarves, Andean gastronomy with grandmother's recipe, and producing their own food.
The women of the community participate actively in the sustainable economy and gain empowerment and the ability to make assertive decisions that is reflected in improving the quality of life.
In the future, what we want is to welcome more people to integrate, in addition that people are part of the activities to be carried out such as the elaboration of textiles (scarves) being the way to express the culture and its worldview.
- Inclusion and participation
- Responsibility and integrity
- Share knowledge
- The objective of the project is to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of the inhabitants of PIJAL through its revitalization, through community development and from a sociocultural perspective.
- Strengthen the spaces for participation in socio-cultural activities in defense of culture, heritage, identity and the environment
- Train community members as facilitators of social transformation, seeking to be the protagonists of their own development. . To achieve these purposes, a better outlined culture and care for the environment, mainly using the new generations. Overall, the project aims to preserve all the rich cultural wealth.
Through the visits that this workshop house will receive,The women have developed an itinerary so that the time you stay in Pijal will be a great experience.
- 12:30 The AJ Guide will introduce you to Sacha Warmikuna.
-This half hour is focused on learning about medicinal plants, Carmen is one of the founders of Sacha Warmikuna, she has great experience in the management of ancestral medicine.
-Recognition of the place.
-Visit the garden where the majority of vegetables are obtained from the crops of the people who live in the surroundings less than 1 km.The community is an example of the practice of the concept of zero Km Food, the food which travelled zero kilometers. Mainly it refers to non-industrial fruits, vegetables, cheese, meat, honey etc, which does not go through global trade chains, therefore it does not have big price margins and quality loss during long storage in international supermarkets. It also has an important
ecological aspect which can not be overseen; since there is no transport involved (we buy from the shop on the corner), the environment does not suffer from direct and indirect pollution.
- 13:00 Once you know where the food comes from, You have a typical menu from the Andes for lunch.
-Before serving us the food, you will be able to participate in the elaboration of the chili sauce, it is a custom of hundreds of years, it is a woman's work and if they know to prepare it, they are ready to get married. In Ecuador, the spicy sauce is served separately so you can choose how spicy you like the food
- 14:00 The last 30 minutes will be an explanation provided in their Kichwa language about the process of manufacturing scarves that is typical in their community.
AJ Guide will be the translator.
PROCESS AND DEMONSTRATION
The process of manufacturing wool-alpaca scarves use resources and materials found in the sector,
- Choose alpaca and sheep wool
- Washing and drying - alpaca or sheep wool
- Scrubbing and cleaning wool
- Combing wool to spin yarn
- Spinning yarn
- Dying yarn with plant pigments
- Weaving (2 weeks)
- Final product
The demonstration will be given step by step, all the materials are ready, just you can observe the weaving process. The teamwork of the women will allow the Sacha Warmikuna to have a variety of products in addition to scarves that are also is made by hand,
- You can find medicinal pads a mix between medicinal plants and embroidery (insomnia problems)
- embroidered tablecloths
- embroidered table runners
- natural medicine, etc.
Why visit the PIJAL” Sacha Warmikuna" Project ?
Around the province of Imbabura there are many projects with similar characteristics, undertake with Sacha Warmikuna, we seek to include all women of all ages, it is open to the whole community to integrate, participate and share knowledge, creating an environment of well-being by improving their coexistence, their economy and most importantly, only sharing will maintain all the culture and ancestral knowledge. Pijal is open to you to visit his home and feel a day of authentic experiences. You know from women of the community how difficult it is to coexist in a machista society. put aside the obstacles and start doing the job of calling all the warmis to carry out their dreams. Contributing to women’s economic empowerment is one way for you to support women through a sustainability strategy.
TEAM AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Rocio Inlago: She is the leader of the project is our direct contact with the community, has a bachelor’s degree in tourism
Beatriz PerugachI: In charge of the administration of the project, has a bachelor’s degree in nutrition.
Carmen Imbaquingo: Has a deep knowledge about medicinal plants, in addition to weaving and embroidery.