Visiting the Emberá

DSC08170One of the activities I like the most in our Global Leadership program: Women as Agent Chang 2013 had been the fact of going and visiting the Emberá. This is a beautiful indigenous ethnic group who lives in Panamá where we have the honor to visit them and see all their culture.

DSC08053To me it was such a great experience to see that they still preserve many of their traditions even when they live from the tourism, for example when we first arrive we saw their typical women dance while the men were playing the musical instruments. After that we could look for their crafts and we could eat their delicious fish with patacones just cooked by an Emberá woman.  It was amazing also to have the opportunity of being dancing with all of them and have that relationship so close with the ladies and the kids, I think playing with  the kids was for me the nicest because I love kids in general.

Apart from this we could also learned the way they live, the cacique or the on in charge of the indigenous region group told us about the way they construct their houses close to the rivers and all the materials they use to do it. He explained us that the houses are constructed very tall to be more secure, in case of a flood or to be apart from the animals. Also he told us that they cure themselves in case of being sick, they have their own botanical plants and they are really prepared for that. The community in summary live from the tourism also, so they were explaining us the way that they separate their roles, each of one has an specific one so its easier to carry out their way of living

DSC08084A point that I realized was that the cacique for me is a person who is really updated in the way of thinking and aware of the issues in the actual world, but he still preserves the Emberá culture. I could see that he is very open-minded in the idea of getting contact with the outside of their community and he believe that their kids should go to school and learn to be more independent once they are grown up, idea which I liked very much.

DSC08047What I also like was that the green area where they live is very conserved and protected from the indigenous people, I could see that they are very aware of the fact that they should not cut the trees if its not necessary and for example they don’t fish the small ones, they know they still have to grow up to preserve more the specie.I was very impressed of the way of living and thinking, that´s why I really like this activity a lot, for me is very important to know the culture before trying to do a change, so I am really happy to going there.I hope I can come back to this indigenous group again in my life and share even more that I share this first time.