Sing the petition on: http://signon.org/sign/urgent-appeal-to-the.fb1?source=c.fb&r_by=3833136
Sunday 12th March, all the inhabitants from one of the oldest Ecovillages of Colombia were at a meeting in Bahia de Taganga, near the Tairona Park, at The foot of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta on the Caribbean coast, when Word arrived from the mountains, that all their houses had been burned down to The ground by the FARC (Frente Armado Revolucionario de Colombia), the largest guerrilla force in the country. Thirty years ago, a group of people from different cities and regions of Colombia and from other countries as well, decided to drop out and move to the high Sierras, to create an alternative life style, and to learn from the Mamos, the shamans and elders from the Kogi Nation. They began building their houses, raising their children, growing their food, doing crafts, learning from the local indigenous people, teaching what they knew, developing a sustainable and spiritual environment, and becoming a new emerging tribe that came to be know as the Hippie/Kogis. The Kogi, one of the largest and best preserved indigenous communities in Colombia, together with the Arahuacos and the Arzarios, have lived in that part of the Sierra Nevada for centuries, maybe thousands of years, having very little contact with the outside world, preserving their culture, language, environment, forms of government and especially their religion.
The first time they opened their villages to the rest of the world was a few years ago, when a crew from the BBC was allowed to get to their hidden villages, talk to their Mamos and let the rest of us know their message
“From the Heart of the World: a message from the Kogi to their younger brothers”.
Today, word came to us that the Kogi are not allowed to leave their villages, they are confined to the Sierra and are kept as hostages by the FARC. The Hippie/Kogis are a historical blend of cultures, trying to live the best of both worlds, and three generations of them, have given a very special flavor to the whole area. They have formed an international community, which includes Colombians, Argentineans, Danes and French families. This original community is now part of the emerging Red de Ecoaldeas de Colombia (Colombian Ecovillages Network), which was born this winter at a First Bioregional Gathering, held in the department of Antioquia and hosted and coordinated by La Caravana Arcoiris para la Paz.
Unfortunately, in the last months, the Sierra, which had for years been under the control of the FARC, now has become a battleground between them and the Paramilitary forces, both trying to hold that strategic road that communicates Colombia with the Venezuelan border. And the access to the sea. Last Sunday, the Hippie/Yogis joined the other 2,000,000 Colombian desplazados, farmers, fishermen, indigenous people all over the country that have had to leave their homes because of the war, and have become homeless, jobless, robbed of their spirit and a growing problem for the oversized cities.
We are therefore sending a national and international appeal to all Ecovillages Networks to let the world know about this situation, to contact them, show support for their cause and send your generous help in this moment of crisis. The Caravan is helping set up today a center in the city of Medellin to collect clothes, bedding, food, money, medicines, household goods, anything
that can alleviate the more than 30 families and their children.