Agro-ecology Promoters Trainings
Agro-ecology promoters are indigenous volunteers selected by their communities and the Zapatista movement to investigate, practice, and promote traditional and experimental agricultural methods in the autonomous Mayan communities of Chiapas, Mexico. Schools for Chiapas has found these unsung farmer educator / activists to be some of the most inspirational and creative ecologists on the planet. Click here to learn more about what the Zapatistas mean by the term "promoter".
Zapatista agro-ecology promoters take great risks by experimenting with forgotten and sometimes unfamiliar organic, sustainable practices on their families' communal fields. Crop failure is not an academic phenomenon for these Mayan peasants, but must be paid for in lost of income and real hunger by the agro-ecology promoters and their families. Nevertheless, these sustenance-level farmers insist that it is their duty and honor to do what it takes to save the planet and to resist corporate takeovers of their lands, crops, and culture.
Trainings and encounters with the ecological agriculture promoters are delightful experiences with lots of great food and wide ranging discussions about organic farming practices, ozone depletion, reforestation, corporate patents of life forms, indigenous culture, and genetic modifications ~ especially in Mayan corn.
Despite the fact that most ecological agricultural promoters speak very little Spanish (and read less), their beliefs, faith, and skills are powerful and deep in their own indigenous languages. Schools for Chiapas believes that our support for ecological agricultural education carried out in Tzotzil, Tzeltal, Chol, Mam, Tojolabal y Zoque is vital to protecting, preserving, and renovating Mayan agriculture and cultures. Perhaps some day, parts of this educational program will even become pivotal to saving the food supply of the entire planet.
Please click here to support the training of Agro-Ecology promoters.