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Indigenous peoples call for urgent funding to protect themselves against COVID-19

Donate directly to indigenous peoples’ organizations working to prevent the impact of COVID-19 on their communities.

Rainforest Foundation US is currently raising money for two distinct funds with the same aim of providing direct support to indigenous peoples to respond to COVID-19:

  • The Urgent Action Fund (see below) supports CIR and ORPIO, two indigenous peoples’ organizations on the ground in Brazil and Peru. Longtime partners of Rainforest Foundation US, these two organizations requested support for their efforts to quickly mobilize to minimize the impact of COVID on their communities. This fund may expand as other partners express needs.

  • The Amazon Emergency Fund will direct financial support to indigenous peoples’ organizations across the Amazon, including and beyond where Rainforest Foundation US works, wherever the need is greatest. Decisions on financial allocations are being made by a board including members of indigenous peoples’ representatives, civil society organizations and donors. Rainforest Foundation US is a member of the board.

For both funds, Rainforest Foundation US will be issuing direct payments to the indigenous peoples’ organizations on the ground who are delivering effective on-the-ground responses to COVID-19.

To protect themselves from COVID-19, indigenous peoples across the Amazon have confined themselves to their territories. Although this measure is vital to mitigate peoples’ exposure to the virus, it is creating hardship as community  members struggle to secure basic needs and as livelihoods are severely limited.

Indigenous leaders have taken proactive measures to protect their communities, including deploying community members and security teams to enforce village closures, continuing to monitor and take action against illegal miners, loggers and farmers who enter their territories, delivering food and disinfection supplies to the communities in greatest need, and advocating with the state and national governments for sufficient measures to meet indigenous peoples’ unique needs during this time. But more is needed.

Rainforest Foundation US is launching a fundraiser in collaboration with Nia Tero to channel direct and immediate relief to indigenous organizations that are delivering aid and services to affected communities.

Nia Tero and the board of directors of Rainforest Foundation US will match all donations to the fund 1:1 up to $50,000.

Support is needed to purchase food, personal protective equipment, basic medical supplies, calling cards, and fuel to keep isolated communities safe and healthy.

100% of donations less bank fees will go directly to indigenous peoples’ organizations to support their COVID-19 prevention and response measures. All donations are tax deductible.


Who You Are Supporting

The Indigenous People’s Organization of the Eastern Amazon (Organización Regional de los Pueblos Indígenas del Oriente, or ORPIO) is based in the northern state of Loreto in the Peruvian Amazon.

ORPIO represents more than 430 indigneous member communities from 35 ethnicities. With RFUS, ORPIO is supporting some 110 Kitchwa, Maijunas, Ticuna and Yaguas communities–home to more than 5,000 vulnerable families–along the Napo and Amazon River basins.

The Indigenous Council of Roraima (Conselho Indígena de Roraima, or CIR) is the main representative indigenous organization in the northern state of Roraima in the Brazilian Amazon. 

Roraima is home to 342 indigenous communities, with a population of over 70,000 people, including the Macuxi, Wapichana, Ingarikó, Patamona, Taurepang, Wai Wai, Yekuana, Yanomami, Sapará, Pirititi and Wamiri Atroari. CIR is active in 246 of these communities.

Featured ORPIO article:

Featured CIR article:



COVID-19 Prevention Infographics to Share

French (Guyana)

Portuguese (Brazil)

Spanish (Peru)

English (Guyana)

For the full story and more languages click here.



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