The Amazon rainforest is one of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the world, with over 40,000 plant species and 2.5 million insect species! Also, many species of Amazonian flora and fauna have medicinal properties, and about 25 percent of pharmaceutical drugs are derived from the rainforest.The main indigenous group in the region, the Kichwa nation, is known for using natural healing and plant medicine to treat everything from colds to chronic illnesses and wounds. Despite the existence of both traditional and Western medicine in the region, this province has disproportionate access to healthcare and a lack of educational resources for disease prevention.
Interns work in the Napo province, centered around the main city of Tena. This province is home to many natural healers, herbalists, and medicine men that are working hard to preserve their traditions.
- Live with a host family that uses plant medicine and traditional healing practices
- Learn about Amazonian herbalism, traditional medicine practices, and traditional farming practices
- Depending on the placement, opportunity to make salves, tinctures, balms, and more; observe and/or participate in traditional cleansings; plant medicinal plants in agroforestry farms
- Collaborate on projects that disseminate knowledge of indigenous, traditional medicine
- Opportunity to collaborate part-time in a health clinic, hospital, or governmental health organization