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Project February 8, 2021

COVID-19 Puts Bolivian Indigenous People at Risk of Extinction

The coronavirus pandemic has put in danger the daily lives of the global society, in particular vulnerable sectors such as the one of the Indigenous people. They are practically at risk of extinction due to this sickness and the levels of poverty that make it difficult to fight it. In Bolivia, at least 40% of the population is Indigenous and belongs to one of 36 ethnic groups. Many of these groups live in autonomous nations. This reporting will cover this phenomenon in three ethnic groups that well represent the rest of the Indigenous people: The first group is the Kallawaya (of Aymara roots and whose traditional medicine has been recognized by the UNESCO as a world heritage), then the RaqaypampeƱos (of Quechua root), and finally the Guaranis. These three groups are located in the Andes, valleys, and lower lands respectively. The journalistic work is a collaboration with the network of Bolivian Community Radios, as well as with two journalists from Peru and Paraguay, which share with Bolivia the Aymara, Quechua, and Guarani culture. Cases of coronavirus in the proposed communities will be documented, as well as the measures that were taken against it, the natural treatments that were used, and the collective risks that they confront. The collaborative work proposes the creation of an interactive database that will register the number of cases of coronavirus and the selected Indigenous communities in real time.