10 years ago, our organization was set in motion. Founded on the principle of generosity, the intention was to enable the continuation and growth of Indigenous cultures and shamanic practice worldwide. We’ve explored this through many collaborations and projects over the past decade and now, with our roots more firmly planted and our ambition expanded higher, we begin our year motivated and focused. Here are just a few highlights from 2019 and some exciting new places we hope to go in 2020.
A FRESH COMPASS
Last summer we gathered as a board to look back through our work and refocus the organization to have a greater impact. From our collective work and all that we’ve learned through these years, we refined and updated our mission to focus our work. This means, not only updates to our mission, but a more aligned relationship to all aspects of our work – from the projects we support and the products we purchase and sell, to the content we share and impact we have through our messaging and education.
UPDATED LANGUAGE AND WEBSITE
We believe that our work is as much about funding projects as it is about the way we promote and share information. This is why, in 2019 we took the time to examine the language we use seeking to consider the wide array of perspectives around language when speaking about indigenous people and sacred tradition. We’ve applied this to our completely updated Project Pages and “Learn” blog. Articles will continue to be posted frequently, but we believe it’s important that the wisdom comes right from the source. This means new content will welcome stories and teachings from native elders, leaders and storytellers, and our projects will continue to be updated and supported based on the specific goals and initiatives expressed by our indigenous collaborators themselves.
Overall, these simple but powerful changes are designed to strengthen our work, our integrity and fulfill our mission. Take some time to visit the new Project Pages and continue to subscribe to our Shamanic Edge Newsletter to receive updates on projects and new articles as they’re posted.
With your continued support in 2019, CSEE was able to fund multiple projects within shamanic communities around the world.
- We completed our long time student academic project with multiple Shipibo students completing their college education and receiving their diplomas.
- We began a new project called “The Kurin Metsa School of Shamanism” which establishes a formal apprenticeship opportunity for four Shipibo students to study with Enrique Flores Sinuiri – an elder Onanya (shaman) in their community.
- And we funded the purchase of a sewing machine and materials for a Shipibo woman-owned business to begin the production of original artisan products starting with the double-sided tote bags which are now available through our online store.
- We co-funded the Sacha Warmi Healthcare Project to support the preservation of local Indigenous health care methods. The project trains healthcare workers, creates communication initiatives between western healthcare agents and local Indigenous practitioners, and creates audiovisual material to catalogue medicinal plants and their uses.
- We partnered with AC Humana – a Mexico based non-profit, to fund the work of the local Wixárika (Huichol) community in the restoration of the Queaehruitea temple complex with local, traditional materials within a spiritually vital community of Wixárika (Huichol)es. This project gained a lot of momentum in 2019 and with additional funding, is expected to be completed in the summer of 2022.
2020 will be an exciting year of expansion into new projects, products and storytelling, and we could not have made it this far without your support! We have our sights set on further development with our existing collaborators in Mexico, Peru and Ecuador, and also look forward to new collaborations here in the US with projects in development working with the Navajo Nation and Pueblos in the Southwest. We’re also exploring new ways to promote and share Indigenous wisdom from around the world through our newsletters and blog and we’re excited to roll out new, original hand-made products and offerings from talented Indigenous artists.
Since CSEE’s inception in 2010, we have funded $192,660 to Indigenous communities through past and current projects and we continue to seek new projects that fit with our mission. As we look forward to new collaborations and extending this work, CSEE has available a grant submission application for the 2020/2021 season. If you are aware of projects that are in alignment with CSEE’s mission, please visit shamanicedu.staging.wpengine.com/apply-for-a-grant/
Thank you for your continued donations, purchases and spreading the word about our offerings and mission. We are truly blessed to have you by our side as a community supporting the preservation of Indigenous wisdom, culture and practice throughout the world.
From all of us at the Center for Shamanic Education and Exchange