29 Jul 2015

Wa-ter Your Thoughts?: Lessons Learned in Tena, Ecuador

Karla Feeser, Public Health Intern: Closing out my third week in Archidona, I’ve had a little time to adjust, readjust, and reflect on my internship thus far. As a Public Health Intern with both Water Ecuador and Runa Foundation, I’ve been working on a study to determine the quality of water that is bottled and distributed here in Archidona and also in the neighboring city of Tena.  Additionally, we’ve been conducting surveys to better understand

El Río

Madison Herel, Social Entrepreneurship Intern:   This past weekend we took to the river for a rafting adventure. Gino and Luis, our fabulous guides briefed us on all the ways to avoid falling out of the raft and how to save each other in case of a complete capsize. The river was raging thanks to the heavy rains in the days before, so we were all pretty intent on staying in the raft. With helmets

15 Jul 2015

Insights on MacArthur Forest Management Project: Puni Kotona

Grace Bachmann, Forest Conservation Intern: For me, our four days in Puni Kotona initiated a process of constructing and deconstructing ideas about indigenous life, land management and deforestation.  For three days, we shadowed a community member, Henry Mamallacta, who is contracted by Fundación Runa to survey local loggers on the volume, dimensions and types of timber they extract.  Henry, with a backpack full of data collection sheets, a measuring tape and a GPS, and two

Location to Language: A Whole New World

I have been living and working with people here in Archidona for three weeks now. The experience here has been fantastic. I learned a great deal about Runa Foundation and how they work with the communities here. Not only did I talk a lot with the staff in the foundation, I have also had great conversation with people from all kinds of local organizations. It really helped me to learn about their perspectives and culture. It

7 Jul 2015

Mika’s Weeks with Runa

These past few weeks have been crazy busy but so amazing!! I can't believe I only have a few days left with the beautiful RUNA foundation in this beautiful place. My favorite part by far has been the people I am with and the fact  that everywhere I look there is a vista bonita. Mountains, jungle, clouds,  perfection. "The world doesn't want to be saved. It wants to be loved. That's how you  save it" and

18 Mar 2015

My Time in Peru

In my time in Peru, Runa has helped me to explore the foundation, the country and myself. Arriving in Tarapoto was quite the sight. It was like nothing I have ever seen before in Europe or the United States. Sydney, the Peru coordinator for Runa, and German, the volunteer coordinator for Peru, have been a great help my whole time here, but they were especially great during that first week. They eased me into the

Homestay: Santo Domingo

I'm sure most interns go into a home stay in a Kichwa community with some preconceived notion of what they will learn and how it will change them. Some sort of simple storyline that goes something like, I went into the jungle, saw some poverty and the experience changed me. I too had my own idea of what living in Santa Domingo would be like and I totally underestimated how intense of an effect living

Rosalina the Riveter

If Rosie the Riveter had been the creative work of the Ecuadorian government, she would have likely been a farmer whose flexed arm held a machete rather than a clenched fist. This week has been all about the strong Ecuadorian women, and usually through the context of farming. My first week at Runa has flown by with each day more interesting than the last.   First, let me give you a brief background on Runa

Santa Rita and Bosque Colonso

I have lived in the community of Santa Rita for more than five months now as a Global Citizen Year Fellow working with Runa. Runa put me to the task of working with the community to develop a GIS-based map that delineates areas of conservation and production to help Santa Rita in its planning for agricultural growth. Santa Rita lies at the base of the Andes Mountains where they meet the Amazon Basin, and is