Adriano Karipuna. The Amazon. Protecting our territory.

He has inherited the legacy of his father, one of the few survivors of the genocide half a century ago, and represents a “people” that today numbers only 59 people.

Adriano and his few companions are so attached to his land that they have taken its name: Karipuna,  is a segment of the immense Brazilian Amazon, in the municipality of Panorama, 186 kilometres from
the city of Porto Velho.

In 1998 – when Adriano was eight years old – this territory was “demarcated”, that is, officially recognized by the State as the property of the Karipuna (who agreed to see it reduced by almost half compared to its original size): as a result, it is coveted by the indigenous peoples of Brazil because it should mean security, self-determination, freedom of movement, protection of their culture and biodiversity…

But these conditions are essential, given the appetites of the timber industry and of the companies that would like to profit from the destruction of the forest: invasions and raids are frequent and in recent years there has been no shortage of murders of defenceless Indians.

For years, Adriano – who has also been threatened with death – has been asking the Brazilian government, on behalf of the Karipuna people, to fulfil its duty to protect the land and the forest. And his battle has become, symbolically, a battle in defence of all the indigenous peoples who inhabit the green lung of the planet.

“In the Amazon – he recently recalled – in the first half of 2022, almost four thousand square kilometres of forest were lost, much of which will be transformed into soybean crops and pastures. As well as that, at least 350 indigenous peoples are in extremely difficult conditions and are resisting strenuously to defend their environment.”

He continued: “We are afraid of a genocide because they are after our land. The Brazilian government must remove these invaders and protect our territory and our people. This is the role of the state. And the world must pay attention to the Karipuna people. We protect the forest not just for indigenous people, but for everyone.”

“We are taking care of this heritage. And we need you to be more responsible towards us, indigenous people. We are crying out for help and assistance in protecting our territory, this piece of the Amazon.”

Mentioned by Pope Francis on the occasion of the 2019 Synod for the Amazon, Adriano recalled: «The forest is a sacred place to be entered very carefully. When we hunt, we never kill a mother with her cubs and if small fish end up in our nets, we throw them back into the water. We would rather go hungry than destroy a food source: Brazilians should learn from us; the world should learn about the real love we have for nature.” (Photo: Sermig)




Ecuador. Alexandra Narvaez & Alex Lucitante. “We are people, who…

Two young leaders from the A’i Cofán community of Sinangoe in Ecuador led a movement to protect their people’s ancestral territory from gold mining. Their leadership…

Read more


The Spider, the Elephant and The Hippo.

Because there was a famine in the land, the spider and his family grew thinner and thinner and hungrier and hungrier. In his desperation, the spider…

Read more

Youth & Mission

The voices of young people. Some leave and some remain.

Leaving the Church does not mean abandoning the faith; moving away from the faith does not mean giving up one's spirituality. Even though they are leaving…

Read more