In the dense expanse of the Amazon rainforest, a remarkable figure emerges; Indigenous Chief Dadá, whose unwavering determination and selfless courage are displayed as he fearlessly puts his life on the line to safeguard the precious ecosystem.
As the head of the Forest Guardian Program for Treesistance, he battles against the relentless destruction of the forest, risking his own safety for the protection of nature’s home.
“I am threatened for defending the forest, for defending nature.” – Chief Dadá
Defending the Forest, Defending Life
Chief Dadá, also known as the Chief General of the Maró Indigenous Territory in Brazil, faces immense challenges in his fight to preserve the rainforest. The trees that symbolize life and biodiversity are seen as mere commodities in a market-driven society. The repercussions are devastating as trees are mercilessly cut down and their existence extinguished.
“For the defense of the territory, the defense of space, of the forest… is to work on awareness.” – Chief Dadá
Spreading Awareness for Change
Chief Dadá understands that change begins with raising awareness and education. By amplifying the voices of Brazil’s indigenous population, whose struggles have long been ignored, he strives to make an impact on the international stage. The battle for the territory and the forest is not just physical; it requires a collective awakening to the importance of preserving our natural heritage.
“Because an educated person would not take it down.” – Chief Dadá
Protecting the Primary Forest
The Treesistance movement is a vital force in safeguarding the primary forest in the Amazon. It empowers indigenous communities by equipping them to protect their lands and prevent forest crimes. Through the Forest Guardian Program, Chief Dadá and his fellow rangers tirelessly patrol the forest, combining indigenous knowledge and scientific tools to combat deforestation.
“And many times we manage to have this dialogue with the aggressor… and he ends up leaving because he ended up being aware.” – Chief Dada
The Guardians of Conversation
Engaging in conversations rather than confrontations, the forest guardians seek to educate those who threaten the rainforest. Armed with GPS maps, they prove the ownership of the land and guide trespassers to the realization of their actions. Through dialogue, they foster understanding, and sometimes even the aggressors retreat, enlightened by the guardians’ unwavering dedication.
By the end of 2023, over 1500 km2 of primary rainforest will be under the protection of the Indigenous Forest Guardians Program. Chief Dadá, undeterred by threats or challenges, remains resolute in his fight for the forest’s survival. His unwavering spirit on World Rainforest Day inspires us all to protect our mother nature.
If you want to read more about this topic, check out this article about seven Amazon countries signing rainforest protection pact in response to wildfires!