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ACTIONS AND MILESTONES

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The second international awareness and fundraising campaign tours 6 European countries. AFV organizes a meeting between Raoni and French President Jacques Chirac to discuss the Amazon forest preservation.

French President Jacques Chirac financed a feasibility study for the creation of the Xingu Institute.

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With the blessing of Brazilian President Sarney following his famous words, ”If the world wants to save the Amazon, the world has to pay for it“, Raoni obtains a passport from the Brazilian authorities to travel the world with Sting. Bernard Laine, a French journalist, obtains the support of Television Française 1 (TF1), the oldest and most viewed French TV channel.

 

AFV was established in March 9th, 1989 and plans the first international Amazon rainforest awareness and fundraising campaign for the protection of the Amazon rainforest and its indigenous populations.

 

Raoni meets French President François Mitterrand, Pope John Paul II, Prince Charles, Carlos King of Spain, the Prime Minister of Australia, and government representatives of 17 countries.

Funds are raised for the demarcation of the new Xingu reserve, as dreamed by Raoni.

Third international awareness and fundraising campaign, with meetings all around Europe.

Delivery of the feasibility study of the Xingu Institute in early September 2001, designed by architect Jean-Christophe Dubois and budgeted by French Ambassador Eric Danon.

Unfortunately, due to 9/11, the international community lost interest in the Amazon and the project was shelved. Nevertheless, Raoni created an  institute in the town of Colider, 200 km from the indigenous territory. It still exists as of today.

The fourth international forest protection awareness campaign is launched. The book “Raoni, the memoirs of an Indian chief” is published, with a foreword by French President Jacques Chirac.

Raoni meets Prince Albert II of Monaco and other celebrities.

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Raoni is made Honorary Citizen at the Paris City Hall by Mayor Bernard Delanoë. He also tours Europe once again to raise funds for the protection of the Kayapo territories under siege by illegal loggers, gold diggers and cattle ranchers.

Raoni voices his concern for all indigenous peoples in the Amazon and warns the world about the consequences of the Amazon destruction, especially through the construction of the Belo Monte dam.

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Brazilian President Itamar Franco signs the official decree to protect all Kayapos territories.

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In partnership with AFV, the Mikea Forest Association has built a school allowing Mikea children in the village of Bedo (Madagascar) to receive education, a fundamental universal right.

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In May, AFV organized a sixth campaign with cacique Raoni and cacique Tapi, his spiritual heir. They travel throughout Europe, raising once again awareness for the issues faced by the indigenous peoples. They meet with several notable politicians and public figures including Pope Francis, French President Macron, the Grand Duke of Luxembourg, the Prince of Monaco and the city mayors of Paris, Lyon, Brussels and Geneva.

In November, Raoni and Tapi meet numerous celebrities that voice their support for his cause in Los Angeles, among them Leonardo di Caprio.

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Chief Raoni and French President François Mitterand

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Chief Raoni in Place de la Concorde (Paris)

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     Chief Raoni with Pope John Paul II 

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First sketches of the Xingu Institute

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KAYAPO TERRITORY

XINGU INDIGENOUS TERRITORY

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Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Henri de Nasseau and Chief Raoni

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Chief Tapi Yawalapiti, Pope Francis and Chief Raoni

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French President Emmanuel Macron and Chief Raoni

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Chief Raoni and Mayor of Brussels, Philippe Close

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Tapi, Bemoro, Prince Albert II of Monaco, Raoni and Kaiulu

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UN blue helmets decorating Chief Raoni with peace medal in Lyon

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Tapi Yawalapiti, Leonardo Di Caprio, and Chief Raoni in Los Angeles

Chief Raoni and Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo

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In November 2021, representatives of all 16 nations of the TIX met to create the Aritana Institute with the assistance of AFV. In autumn 2022, the Institute, named after the late great Cacique Aritana Yawalapiti, officially took up its work. 

 

The Institute is managed by the local communities, it coordinates the forest monitoring, agroecological, health and cultural programmes.

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A new European campaign took place in May-June 2023 of the indigenous leaders of the Xingu.

The delegation comprised the tribal leaders Raoni, Yabuti and Bemoro Metuktire as well as Tapi and Watatakalu Yawalapiti. They met the Portuguese, German and French Presidents among many others

Watatakalu and Tapi Yawalapiti with the German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier (May 2023)

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Raoni with the French President Emmanuel Macron (June 2023)

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Watatakalu and Tapi Yawalapiti signing the WHO resolution on indigenous health (Geneva May 2023)

In 1989, AFV planned an international awareness campaign on the deforestation of the Amazon, the first of its kind around 17 countries in 60 days.

 

The spokesperson for the indigenous people was a chief of the Kayapo tribe called Raoni already known to the greater public thanks to the film Raoni, which was selected at the Cannes Film Festival in 1977 and nominated for an Oscar in 1978.

 

During this highly publicized world tour, Raoni was accompanied by the North American Indigenous leader Red Crow. They met with world leaders, giving Raoni, the "Cacique" (tribal chief), an international stature. "Rainforest" foundations were created in twelve countries.

 

Thanks to donations from all around the world, the demarcation of the Kayapo Indigenous' ancestral lands could be completed. In August 1993, the Brazilian President Itamar Franco signed a decree officializing the creation of a vast indigenous territory of  45,000 square miles. With the existing Xingu Indigenous Territory created by Claudio, Leonardo and Orlando Villas-Bôas in 1960, the two bordering territories cover a total area of  55,200 square miles.

 

After 20 years of struggles, the dream of Raoni finally became true.

 

Today, the Kayapo and Xingu territories, home to dozens of indigenous tribes, are considered one of the largest indigenous rainforest reserves in the world.

 

After 1989, AFV organized many more international tours of the Cacique Raoni : in 2000, 2001, 2010, 2011, 2019 and 2023.  The last campaign took Raoni, Tapi Yawalapiti and Watatakalu Yawalapiti, his spiritual heirs, to Europe once again.

 

Since its inception, AFV has also carried out numerous medical assistance missions, contributed to the construction of new dwellings destroyed  by forest fires, strengthened cultural, linguistic and territorial protection and financed countless ad-hoc relief operations.

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