OrigiNations believes in the potential of indigenous youth and elders working together to become powerful agents of change for the benefit of their communities. Its initiatives draw on the human and cultural resources existing locally, bringing into play the creativity, restlessness and courage of the young alongside the experience and historical memory of the elderly in order to generate processes of self-reflection and search for solutions.
Through immersion workshops, excursions, and practical projects, youth and elders find a space that enables them to debate issues of concern to their communities and develop strategies to tackle the challenges that confront them. In the process, they discover their own talents and learn to appreciate the achievements of their ancestors. The resulting pride and cultural self-esteem are the bedrock on which their commitment and future endeavors rest.
OrigiNations tries to respond to each situation individually. At the same time, communities themselves are encouraged to take control of the process, so inevitably each initiative will produce different outcomes. Some results of past collaborations include:
- The founding of youth organizations dedicated to the protection of the cultural and natural heritage of their peoples and the promotion of their rights
- The documentation of endangered knowledge and traditional practices and the establishment of cultural centers or historical archives
- The production of community maps that serve as instruments to protect cultural and natural resources threatened by external economic interests
- The development of innovative educational materials which acknowledge the cultural specificity of indigenous communities