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Sustainable Indigenous Amazon

Association in Defense of Ethno-environmental Kanindé

Project official website
Total project value
R$ 7,352,757.03
Total support amount
US$ 1,936,464.85



Contribute to the implementation of the Territorial and Environmental Management Plans (PGTA) of TIs Igarapé Lourdes and Zoró and to the development of PTGAS for TIs Rio Guaporé and Rio Negro Ocaia


Indigenous communities of TIs Igarapé Lourdes, Zoró, Rio Guaporé and Rio Negro Ocaia

Territorial scope

Indigenous lands (TI) Igarapé Lourdes (RO), Zoró (MT), Rio Guaporé (RO) and Rio Negro Ocaia (RO)



The Territorial and Environmental Management Plan (PGTA) is a dynamic instrument of the National Policy of Land-use and Environmental Management of Indigenous Lands (PNGATI), designed to express the prominence, autonomy and self-determination of indigenous peoples. The PGTA materializes the planning, agreed by the entire indigenous community involved, of the use of its territory for cultural, environmental and economic purposes.

Indigenous lands (TI) Igarapé Lourdes (RO), Zoró (MT), Rio Guaporé (RO) and Rio Negro Ocaia (RO), covered by the project, are pressured by the economic activities of their surroundings and the invasion of their territories for illegal activities, such as hunting, fishing, mining and timber extraction. 

The Association for Ethno-Environmental Defense Kanindé (Kanindé), responsible for executing the project, is a non-profit civil association that has been active, since 1992, in several initiatives aimed at forest conservation and the cultural, political and socioeconomic empowerment of indigenous communities in the states of Rondônia, Mato Grosso, Amazonas and Pará. 


The project supported the development of Territorial and Environmental Management Plans (PGTA) for TIs Rio Guaporé and Rio Negro Ocaia and the implementation of PTGAs in TIs Igarapé Lourdes and Zoró.

To implement the PGTAs, the project carried out actions for developing a Territorial Surveillance System, with  training of indigenous environmental agents and support to expeditions; strengthening of sustainable production chains, with technical training for management and increase of production; as well as building an Indigenous Reference Center in TI Igarapé Lourdes. In TI Zoró, the project implemented homegardens, renovated the Cultural Promotion and Territorial Protection Center and created a brand for the TI’s products.


The project falls under the components “sustainable production” (1) and “land-use planning” (3) of the Amazon Fund’s Logical Framework. Its direct effects were defined as follows: 1.1 “economic activities for sustainable use of the biodiversity identified and developed in TI Igarapé Lourdes”; 1.2 “chains of forest products with increased added value in TIs Zoró and Igarapé Lourdes”; 1.3 “expanded managerial and technical capacities for developing economic activities for sustainable use of the biodiversity in TIs Igarapé Lourdes and Zoró”; 1.4 “deforested and degraded areas recovered used for food security and ecological conservation in TI Zoró”; 3.2 “TIs Rio Guaporé and Rio Negro Ocaia with defined land-use and environmental management” and “TI Igarapé Lourdes territorially protected.”

The project sought to advance the implementation of PNGATI in these four TIs, both in developing two new PGTAs, as well as in implementing two existing PGTAs. TIs and protected areas are the least deforested territorial categories of the Amazon. Support for territorial protection and consolidation of  the ITs territorial management directly contributes to the Amazon Fund’s overall objective, namely, “reduction of deforestation with sustainable development in the Brazilian Amazon.”

The project falls under the “Sustainable Production” (1) and “Land-use Planning” (3) components of the logical framework of the Amazon Fund.



Date of approval 12.04.2015
Date of the contract 01.21.2016
Date of conclusion 03.13.2020
Disbursement period 40 months (from the date the contract was signed)


date amount
1º disbursements 03.24.2016 R$2,681,432.40
2º disbursements 07.17.2017 R$3,746,031.88
3º disbursements 02.26.2019 R$1,143,082.49
4º disbursements 03.12.2020 -R$217,789.74
Total amount disbursed R$7,352,757.03

Total amount disbursed in relation to the Amazon Fund’s support



To implement the TI Igarapé Lourdes PTGA, the project developed actions of territorial surveillance, strengthening of the production chains and construction of an Indigenous Reference Center.

The surveillance system implemented aimed to improve the protective measures in Indigenous Land Igarapé Lourdes. Thirty-two indigenous environmental agents received training, together with the purchase and maintenance of equipment and means of transportation important for surveillance actions, as well as the refurbishment and manning of two warehouses used as a support point for Funai’s surveillance team and for indigenous people when they do surveillance.

The 13 surveillance expeditions carried out resulted in a decrease in invasions, especially near the villages. The Manual of Surveillance Procedures, which was developed in a participatory manner, was printed and distributed to associations, indigenous environmental agents and the community.

The “sustainable production” component focused on the production chains of cassava flour, banana and fish farming. For each chain, the project conducted training to manage and increase production, directly involving 63 indigenous people. Six flour mills were renovated and built, equipment was purchased and two flour production courses held. The banana trees were treated and prepared for planting, which took place in early 2019. Six fish tanks were renovated and built with technical assistance support, receiving a thousand juvenile fish each.

The Indigenous Reference Center was built, with nearly 750m², comprising offices, auditorium, library, kitchen, bathrooms, accommodations and dining room attached. The building adopted aspects of indigenous architecture, with communities participating in the specification process of the facilities. The space is being used for collective discussions on land management and for cultural events promoted by the Gavião and Arara peoples.

To implement the TI Zoró PGTA, the project developed actions to recover degraded areas with homegardens, renovation and expansion of the Zoró Cultural Promotion and Territorial Protection Center and creation of a brand for the artifacts and products of the Zoró people.

Homegardens were implemented to recover 10 hectares of degraded areas around two villages, with the participation of the communities in the seedling and planting. Two nurseries were built, and training activities were carried out for their maintenance. The indigenous people participated in the planting, having received guidance on silviculture, area maintenance and care to prevent fires.

The Zoró Center was renovated and expanded, which included three structures built in the maloca style and a house, with meeting rooms, classrooms, computer room, library, accommodations and cafeteria, in a total area of 875 m². At the end of the project, the Zoró Center was ready to meet the needs of the community, hosting cultural events, workshops on various topics, assemblies; offering access to internet, computers and video equipment, basic education; and housing work teams, teachers and Indigenous people who move from other villages to participate in events and trainings in the center.

The project created a brand for the artifacts and products of the Zoró people, which was registered at the National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI). Stamps and labels were printed and delivered to the Association of the Zoró Indigenous People (Apiz) and are being used to identify the handicrafts and bags of Brazil nuts, within a marketing strategy for adding value.

Regarding the development of PTGAs for TIs Rio Guaporé and Rio Negro Ocaia, the three work stages were completed: ethno-environmental diagnosis, ethno-zoning and PGTA development, with its editing, printing and release in the respective TIs. The diagnostic phase consists of surveying the mammalian fauna, ichthyofauna (fish), birds, herpetofauna (reptiles and amphibians), physical environment, Ethno-history, socioeconomics of the surroundings, and vegetation, generating information on the environmental and cultural situation of these TIs. Awareness-raising events are also held in all TIs villages to ensure greater participation of the communities.

Final Evaluation

Result and impact indicators

The project activities contributed to the expected outcomes of the “sustainable production” (1) and “land-use planning” (3) components of the Amazon Fund’s Logic Framework.

Below are the outcomes of the main agreed indicators for monitoring the predicted direct effects.

Direct effect 1.1 – Economic activities for the sustainable use of biodiversity identified and developed in TI Igarapé Lourdes

  • Revenue generated from economic activities of sustainable use – banana and cassava flour (outcome indicator)
    Target: not defined | Result achieved: R$ 145,000

The productive activities developed by Indigenous communities usually have as main objective subsistence, since food security is fundamental for these communities. Selling surpluses is also important because it allows the communities to obtain monetary resources. The support provided by the project strengthened the production chains of banana and cassava flour, allowing to expand surplus sales.

The project contributed significantly to diversify the TI income-generating productive activities (banana, flour and fish farming), previously concentrated chestnut exploitation.

Direct effect 1.2 – Extended forest product chains with added value in the TIs Zoró and Igarapé Lourdes

  • Brand for Zoró products created and filed for registration (output indicator)
    Target: 1 | Result achieved: 1

Value the standing forest includes recognizing the role of traditional communities and their ways of life in the preservation their territories. One way of achieving this recognition is to add value to products from these communities, using a differentiated insertion in the market. Developing a private label allows consumers to identify the socio-environmental value of these products.

Direct effect 1.3 – Expanded managerial and technical capacities for developing economic activities for sustainable use of biodiversity in TIs Igarapé Lourdes and Zoró

  • Number of indigenous people trained in sustainable productive activities effectively using the knowledge acquired (outcome indicator)
    Target: 60 | Result achieved: 77 
  • Number of technical assistance men-hour (MH) provided (output indicator)
    Target: 960 MH | Result achieved: 7,384 MH

Technical training in productive activities is a permanent demand of indigenous communities, enabling an increase in quality of life and family/community income. A better qualification in performing these activities positively impacts the family’s routine and any gain in efficiency is immediately perceived.

The project has had a significant result in providing technical assistance, which greatly helps communities in incorporating the knowledge acquired, and also creates conditions for the sustainability of the project results.

Direct effect 1.4 – Deforested and degraded areas recovered and used for food security and ecological conservation in TI Zoró

  • Area recovered by SAFs (output indicator)
    Target: 10 ha | Result achieved: 10 ha
  • Number of nurseries implanted (output indicator)
    Target: 2 | Result achieved: 2

Recovery of areas and implementation of nurseries in TI Zoró are activities that allow, in addition to environmental benefits, social and economic gains from agroforestry systems (SAF) production and seedlings. Selling seedlings of native forest species is a segment with good prospects due to the plant recovery determinations of the Forestry Code.

Direct effect 3.2 – TIs Rio Guaporé and Rio Negro Ocaia with defined land-use and environmental management and TI Igarapé Lourdes territorially protected

  • Number of published PGTAs (output indicator)
    Target: 2 | Result achieved: 2

The established PGTAs are an important achievement for the indigenous communities, signaling a systematization of needs and priorities in managing their territories. PGTAs can be used as a subsidy in the dialogue with public institutions, and in developing projects for fundraising, also meaning that these communities underwent a participatory planning process, which assumes special relevance in societies where the collective good act as the main organizer of social life.

  • Number of territorial invasions and other socio-environmental conflicts observed in TI Igarapé Lourdes (outcome indicator)
    Baseline: 5 | Observed result: 13
  • Number of indigenous people trained for territorial surveillance (output indicator)
    Target: 30 | Result achieved: 41
  • Number of surveillance expeditions carried out at TI Igarapé Lourdes (output indicator)
    Target: 10 | Result achieved: 13

One of PNGATI main objectives is to ensure the integrity of indigenous territories. The front line of territorial protection has been carried out by indigenous people, using surveillance expeditions and observation of the territory. Training is important because it allows communities to use geo-technological resources such as GPS, to subsequently alert the competent authorities if necessary. The increased number of identified occurrences may reflect an improvement in these communities’ surveillance capacity but may also result from the increase in invasions observed in the TI Igarapé Lourdes. 

As a general result, the implementation of the project benefited 2,840 indigenous inhabitants from the four TIs.

The table below presents the evolution of deforestation in the last four years in the four TIs benefited by the project, including the total area deforested. The figures are largely consistent with the overall picture observed in the Amazonian TIs, of low deforestation rates. The exception was the high deforestation observed in the 2018 Forestry year in TI Zoró, corresponding to 15% of all forest removal already observed in that TI (about 38 hectares deforested in 2018 vis-à-vis a total deforestation in this TI of approximately 251 hectares). 

It has been observed, however, that some factors may contribute to increased deforestation in TIs in general, such as: insufficient repression of environmental crimes; increased international prices of agricultural commodities; improved roads facilitating logistics of access to TIs; and co-optation of indigenous people by invaders to steal timber or practice illegal mining. 



Area (km²)

Total deforestation (km²)


Annual increments (km2)






PGTA implementation

Igarapé Lourdes
















PGTA development

Rio Guaporé








Rio Negro Ocaia









Institutional and administrative aspects

The project was executed in all the planned actions, and the greatest difficulties came from its context of action, since the pressures on the indigenous lands where the project is developed are high In the TIs Zoró and Igarapé Lourdes, access is by land, which favors invasions for timber theft, mining and other threats. Executing the project in this scenario was difficult, as the team was constantly the target of intimidation and threats, which required increased attention.

On project execution and implementation of activities, we highlight the strategy adopted of hiring indigenous people to act as coordinators and assistants of the activities developed. Representatives for each component were chosen collectively and remained in the areas, directly with the communities, being an agent of the project of continued presence in the field. According to Kanindé, this approach was successful because each coordinator developed skills relevant to project management, being responsible for budgets, quotes, accountability, attendance list and others. This training of skills is a positive externality of the project, which may become relevant for future initiatives in the territory, led by the indigenous agents themselves.

Risks and lessons learned

Within the difficult context mentioned above, one impactful situation was a fire in an area recovered by the project, which according to the Association of the Zoró Indigenous People (APIZ) may have been caused by invaders in retaliation to the inspection activities carried out by the indigenous people in the territory. Nevertheless, the five nurserymen trained by the project continue to produce seedlings, aiming at recovering losses from the fire, and also at selling seedlings.

As the project operates in territories with presence of illegal activities, Kanindé guided its team to always walk in pairs, and if possible, accompanied by a member of the indigenous community.

Although the dialogue between the indigenous people, Funai and the project executors had its tensions, the beneficiary evaluated choosing an indigenous person as one of the project coordinators as a good solution, which allowed others to better understand the actions.

The community centers built favored the indigenous people’s self-esteem and autonomy, despite the difficulties for civil works companies to access the indigenous lands due to the distances and poor roads. 

Sustainability of results

According to the community, the training and expeditions were very fruitful, and the indigenous people have been able to continue the dynamics of surveillance of the territory. Integrating the acquired knowledge into the community’s routine is conducive for the continuity of this type of activity.

A partnership was established between the associations of the Gavião and Arara peoples (who share the same indigenous land – TI Igarapé Lourdes), so that the vehicles and equipment acquired by the project were distributed, aiming at their better use and maintenance. The truck acquired early in the project, to aid the production of TI Igarapé Lourdes, enabled the flow of production, which could not be done before, and the associates created a collection fund with part of the income obtained from the productive activities for maintaining the truck.

Fish farming, which was primarily thought for subsistence, was evolving well, and by the end of the project, the community expressed their intention to begin selling fish in the local trade, and, in the future, for government procurement programs. Diversifying income sources is important for several reasons, such as, for instance, the seasonality of some of the products explored, like the Brazil nut.


In this area we offer some PDF files with the main publications generated by the project. Click the filename to start the download.