Practice English Speaking&Listening with: The Children of the Anaconda

Difficulty: 0

San Francisco is going through a crisis

Our fishery, our fauna, and our culture are endangered

We had to adapt to the lifestyle of the cities.

Dealing with Gringos and Mestizos,

we almost lost our culture.

However, at this point, we all want to revitalize our culture.

The Shipido culture

is passed onto us by our grandparents,

they tell us about our old ways: how we lived, ate, used to share;

how we used to be in touch with nature.

We can learn a lot from nature,

like how to use our medicinal plants.

Many of us do not know how this is done anymore.

They tell us that we used to have way bigger fish

which were shared amongst the whole community.

At dinner time, we would go over to the neighbors and share.

The neighbors would also chip in some food.

Comparing that to how we live today,

we realize that there is little left of this culture.

Sure, our culture is alive,

we just need to practice it more.

We think that we can revitalize our culture,

because we come from the same culture, and we are connected.

Our young people are again proud to be Shipibo!

People from around the world have certainly heard of the Anaconda.

To the Shipibo people, Mother Anaconda is the mother of all of us.

She is the fountain of inspiration for the survival of the Shipibo.

Here we are at the Botanical Garden of San Francisco

with a group brought together by traditional medicine men

who practice age old Shipibo healing practices

Also here with us is the Major of San Francisco,

Mr. Andres Garcia Inuma,

Emerson is also a member of the community, and a good friend.

Many tourists come to this fresh spring to bathe,

They enjoy and observe nature here.

But it's this spring that tells the story of our Botanical Garden.

We value our culture,

We honor our culture, our medicine, and the wisdom of our elders,

especially the wisdom of our traditional healers.

We have many medical plants in our Dinamarca community.

Some have lost the knowledge of how to prepare medicines.

We therefore have great interest in learning how to do this,

and to pass this information on to future generations.

Many, locals and strangers alike, suffer from various illnesses.

We have very good healers in Dinamarca,

they have successfully cured us over a long time.

It is important for our young people to learn these secrets.

So we won't have to rely on expensive drugs;

that don't work or are expensive.

Since we have all these plants, let's use them to cure ourselves!

We have created several artisan cooperatives in Dinamarca

These coops are asking for a permanent structure in the village.

So we sat down with our artisan women, to come up with a plan

to find people who can help us with our projects.

For example, here is a business plan we worked out together.

The purpose of this project is to improve the quality of our crafts.

Our people live in many districts of the Ucayali basin:

not only here in Yarina Cocha and San Francisco

Dinamarca belongs to the district of Macisea.

These projects are important.

Our mothers are struggling, selling crafts on the streets

Moving from one town to the next, hungry, not knowing how to cope.

how to feed their families, how to send their kids to school.

Since I experienced the reality of their condition first hand,

I came to this workshop to present our business plan,

to make connections, and seek support for our poor people.

This fish farm here is run by a single person.

It is common knowledge up and down the Peruvian Amazon,

that we basically don't have any more big fish.

So this gentlemen has just enough room to grow two big Paiches.

So this gentlemen has just enough room to grow two big Paiches.

The Paiche is our biggest fish and it coasts a lot of money at the market.

We used to have plenty of Paiches, but there are hardly any left.

Everyone in the community worries about that.

We need to build a bigger fish farm to grow our own fish.

We don't know much about fish farms in our remote community.

So we want to learn from people in San Francisco how to make these.

Now let me show you how small the fish are around here, in our Ucayali.

That's it: tiny little fishes like that.

All that's left in our lakes and streams.

It is therefore important to have fish farms, to raise bigger fish.

Big fish like Gamitana, Paiche, etc.

Not only our waters, but also other natural resources are dwindling:

The woods in our forests are also disappearing

thanks to big corporations that come in to take our lumber.

So wee need to reforest, in order to provide for our future generations.

We have lots of animals in our forests: monkeys...deer, ect.

All these animals are endangered; our fauna is disappearing.

We have to start reforestation to protect these animals.

We have to protect our rivers and mountains,

and recuperate our natural resources.

This Caterpillar eats the Shukuba plant, which is poisonous.

This caterpillar is called "She Na" in Shipibo.

Speaking of fish farms...

should fish farms be run individually or by the whole community?

How should our fish farms develop in the future?

For example: This fish farm here seems pretty big.

Let me answer you one question at a time...

To answer your first question:

I wouldn't like to manage a fish farm just by myself.

I like to work together, with everybody, as is our custom.

I want to realize a vision for the future,

while keeping future generations in mind.

Many strangers have moved in here from the outside.

These outside interests are responsible for the extinction of our fish

and the pollution of our rivers.

The fasato fish is already gone, for example.

Today, here in Yarina Cocha we only find the Chio Chio,

and other types of really small fish.

Nothing of commercial interest.

I would like to ask you a question about fish farms...

Is it true that we won't have any fish in the future?

What can future generations do to prevent the extinction of our fish?

Well, we could make these fish farms more sophisticated , I'm sure.

That way, we could produce higher quantities of fish faster.

we could sell the fish at the markets to outsiders,

while feeding our own community.

People would be self-sufficient, eat and share with neighbors again.

Most importantly, people will have food in their houses.

Then, you may even see a small scale economy evolve.

Future generations need to realize their situation and become active.

We need to learn more about fish farming techniques.

We need to increase production if we want to live off the fish farms.

Thank you very much for these informative answers.

... they have little red spots,

Her is a scale of a big fish, but today they don't bigger than a Sol-coin

The little ones are white.

We use them a lot in our Shipibo crafts.

We also use them for screens in doorways and for room dividers.

The meat is sold at the market.

for up to 8 sol a kilo, if it's fresh.

Shipibo pottery

We try to improve the quality by giving pottery workshops here.

The workshops here in San Francisco help our art get recognized.

It restores pride in pottery from the Ucayali, locally and internationally.

Right now, we have people from France coming to the workshop.

Better quality will improve the export value of our ceramics.

We network with small enterprises,

to improve our quality of life through our world famous artwork.

Grandma, tell me about the process of making pottery.

Well, first we gather the clay from the earth, dry it a little,

Then, you just add some water to the clay to make it workable.

Like this one; it's nice and soft, see?

Then you add the ashes...

We want to thank Gian Lucas, 2nd grade at the Elementary School

Good afternoon.

Let me mention that my isolated village needs fish farms, too.

We do have enough lakes already, but they are natural lakes.

So, my village, Flor del Ucayali needs fish farms, too.

So we could raise all kinds of fish:

like Gamitana, Paco, and Paiche.

So if any tourist sees this: We could really use your support.

Help us build our own fish farm.

So we could ensure the livelihood of our people.

With your help we can do this.

We want fish farms!

We want fish farms!

I thank Uncle Juan for how he explained our Shipibo ways earlier,

I thank Uncle Juan for how he explained our Shipibo ways earlier,

I also want to thank our friends from the United States.

We would appreciate it if they would continue to work with us.

Thanks to everyone in supporting us in our fish farm projects!

We know they are necessary, because we've run out of big fish.

That's all.

Stay in touch!

stay tuned

produced by the Shipibo People of the Ucayali River

each production phase was realized by the following participants.


The smell of Chota repels the bad spirits:

When they attack me they can't stand the smell.

And on top of that this design hypnotizes them.

Premier on the last day San Fransisco auditorium

Just to remind everybody at 7pm:

tonight at seven we will have the premier of our very own film!

Hugs and stay in touch!


The Description of The Children of the Anaconda