Welcome to the Amazon Forest Store. We have just returned from Peru and will be offering exciting new products every week.

THE DIVINE IN ME GREETS THE DIVINE IN YOU

THE DIVINE IN ME GREETS THE DIVINE IN YOU

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"The closing of our AVP Training for Facilitators included a round of Namaste where two people bow to each other. This customary greeting from India roughly means “the Devine in me greets the Devine in you.” AVP is not associated with any faith, but it is often a deeply spiritual experience."

Continue Reading

CHALLENGES TO FACILITATORS

CHALLENGES TO FACILITATORS

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

Continue Reading

FACILITATOR PRACTICE SESSIONS – Part 1

FACILITATOR PRACTICE SESSIONS – Part 1

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

Continue Reading

PRACTICE TEAM FOUR IN SYNCH

PRACTICE TEAM FOUR IN SYNCH

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"The fourth practice group in our workshop blew our minds in their session on Cooperation. They presented their exercises with clarity, led them with positive energy, and ended them with graceful transitions to the next activity. "

Continue Reading


FACILITATOR TEAMS PREPARE THEIR PRACTICE SESSIONS

FACILITATOR TEAMS PREPARE THEIR PRACTICE SESSIONS

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"On day 2, practice teams gathered around a small table with their manuals, markers and large sheets of paper to prepare their session.  After deciding who was going to lead each activity, they prepared their materials and practiced how they were going to present each activity to the large group.  The lead team coaches needed to help their practice teams understand their tasks without doing too much for them."

Continue Reading

SIMPLE PHRASES- PROFOUND IMPACT

SIMPLE PHRASES- PROFOUND IMPACT

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"Community agreements are another foundation of AVP workshops. Our brainstorm produced many standards: “Respect oneself and others,” “Be punctual,” “Don’t interrupt when someone else is speaking,” “Respect confidentiality,” They are common-sense phrases, but they have a profound impact on individual and group attitudes and behavior when faithfully applied."

Continue Reading

THE EGRETS THAT MADE ME CRY

THE EGRETS THAT MADE ME CRY

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"Four hours later they called me over to show me the four snowy egret ornaments they had lined up on the table. It only took a few seconds to realize I was witnessing a golden moment I had never experienced before. This group had embraced the lessons we had been encouraging to work together to perfection. Before me stood four perfect and identical beautiful birds."

Continue Reading

CHAMBIRA BIRDS IN NATURE

CHAMBIRA BIRDS IN NATURE

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"Each facilitator trainee in turn then picked up and pointed out one aspect of one bird that they thought was very well made. Comments were very specific like, "this beak has a shape that looks just like the one in the photo of the real bird."

Continue Reading


ARTISANS MAKE PROGRESS WITH FIRST ROUND OF BIRD ORNAMENTS

ARTISANS MAKE PROGRESS WITH FIRST ROUND OF BIRD ORNAMENTS

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"A few of the artisans with several years of experience had almost finished making two northern cardinals - the model representing this popular bird in the US. It was impressive as well to see advances in more complicated models like the great blue heron, marvelous spatule-tail hummingbird and chestnut-eared aracari."

Continue Reading

TRAINING ARTISANS TO TRAIN ARTISANS

TRAINING ARTISANS TO TRAIN ARTISANS

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"Many artisans were understandably shy at first about approaching a more experienced artisan thinking they would have nothing valuable to share with them. Over time, though, artisans at all levels realized that they all had things they could teach to and learn from each other."

Continue Reading

Arrival in Amazonas for Artisan Facilitator Training workshop

Arrival in Amazonas for Artisan Facilitator Training workshop

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"At the first house we passed, we were greeted by Sr. Luis and his friendly dog carrying a young squirrel monkey passenger. The dog has been the monkey's closest companion since Luis rescued him as an orphaned baby."

Continue Reading

ARTISANS LEARN TO DRAW A BIRD

ARTISANS LEARN TO DRAW A BIRD

by Campbell Plowden April 07, 2022

"We asked each person to draw a profile of their bird that they could use as a guide for the model they would weave next. It would ideally be drawn so they would know the shape and size of each part of the bird. They would next analyze the colors of the bird in the photo and decide what color or combination of colors they would use to make each part."

Continue Reading


Appreciations for Jim Finley – a mentor and forester who cared deeply about people and nature

Appreciations for Jim Finley – a mentor and forester who cared deeply about people and nature

by Campbell Plowden December 27, 2021

Most faculty members are super-busy with multiple tasks so I was astounded when Jim welcomed me into his office and spent two hours discussing my ideas about studying the ecology, management and marketing of non-timber forest products with a native community in the Brazilian Amazon.  While I had not taken a single class in forestry, we brainstormed every topic with great enthusiasm, and he treated me with the respect that some academics only grant their peers with a proven track-record.

Continue Reading

Amazon Ecology partners with Penn State Social Entrepreneur class

Amazon Ecology partners with Penn State Social Entrepreneur class

by Campbell Plowden July 13, 2021

The student teams have given us a lot of valuable information and recommendations for ways to improve our website, work with influencers and social media, better frame our goals and achievements for the public and funders, and begin to understand the level of staffing and financial resources we will need to become a sustainable organization.  - Campbell Plowden, Executive Director, Amazon Ecology

Continue Reading

GETTING STUFF DONE IN IQUITOS

by Center for Amazon Community Ecology February 28, 2018

GETTING STUFF DONE IN IQUITOS

While it can be very hard to get certain kinds of things done in Peru in an efficient way (like standing in line for hours to pay a bill at a bank), it’s a fun adventure to get other stuff done in a fun, timely and affordable way. I went out on Sunday to get some basic supplies for our house and got most of them at a modern store called Quispe, but right around the corner I found a fellow named Elmo who is the owner of one of the typical mobile micro-stalls (about 3 x 2 x 5 feet) that is his shop for his business to make copies of keys and help people with other kinds of locks. He first used one of those simple machine to make a rough cut of the key copy from the original. He then used a narrow grinder to fine-tune the copy.

I was really impressed that he used a hand caliper to measure the depth of each notch in the original key and the copy he was making. He eyeballed any minute differences because the calipers had no graduated lines on them. Elmo had been doing this work for 30 years so I felt pretty confident that his keys that cost me $1.25 each to make would work. He gave me his phone number to reach him just in case. His copies got me in my house just fine, but I’d like to see him again just to learn more about his life.

While the lease that we signed to rent our new house for CACE in Iquitos said everything was in good working order, we’ve discovered a few things that needed fixing to make the place more comfortable, safe and functional for our needs. As soon Tulio moved into the house, he met our neighbor Jorge who quickly became our go-to motorcar driver. When we mentioned to Jorge yesterday that we had a few plumbing issues that needed tending to, he said he had a friend who could handle them.

Julio showed up ten minutes later. They quickly determined that the threads in the faucet in the kitchen sink were stripped, the sink in my bathroom was leaking because the pipe under it was totally rusted through, and the sink in Tulio’s bathroom was clogged and just needed cleaning. After several trips to the hardware store to get various new pipes, glue, and tape, Julio donned my headlamp and used his and Jorge’s collection of old saws and wrenches to replace or clean all of the degraded items.

Julio returned this morning and spent the better part of the day doing four more tasks: 1) installing new pipes connecting our elevated water tank in the back patio to faucets in the work sinks so we could distill our rosewood material with an abundant supply of cooling water, 2) installed a new section of mosquito netting in my bedroom, 3) installed a new section of mosquito netting in the space above my bathroom, and 4) fixed up a wire in the back patio that was loosely connected by duct tape that was hanging out of a busted piece of PVC pipe.

We paid a total of about $25 in materials and $50 in labor for all seven jobs and everyone felt good about the tasks that were done. Julio looked around the house as he was leaving and said “please call me if you need anything done. I can fix your roof, put up a wall…….” Tulio told me tonight that Julio is someone who is referred to here as a “mil oficios” – someone who can do a thousand things. I know we have handymen in the US, too, but I’m awfully glad that I met Julio here.

Continue Reading

STINGLESS BEES AT CHINO

by Center for Amazon Community Ecology February 27, 2018

STINGLESS BEES AT CHINO One of the houses I also visit first at Chino belongs to the veteran artisan Romelia and her husband Jorge. Jorge is one of the folks in the village who has maintained several wooden box nests with stingless bees as part of a honey producing project developed under the guidance of German Perilla from George Mason University in Virginia. While these bees don't produce as much honey as their stinging honeybee counterparts, their honey is highly valued for its strong flavor and medicinal properties.

During my last visit, Jorge's nest boxes were in his back yard. This time, he had placed both at opposite ends of his kitchen to keep a closer eye on them. I took several shots of bees coming and going out of the entrance tube as well as the guard which is always on duty to prevent the entrance of unwelcome visitors (other bees, flying ants, etc.) who might wish to invade to prey on their young.

Check out the video Beekeeping in the Amazon (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ca2kYBJN4tI) focused on a stingless bee project developed with Maijuna native communities by OnePlanet.Org and its director (and CACE board member) Michael Gilmore.

Continue Reading



1 2 3 13 Next »