Working, Changing, and Learning Together with Indigenous Communities

29 June 2022
Indigenous communities

Did you know that according to Amnesty International, there are 370 million Indigenous People around the world across 90 countries, belonging to more than 5000 different Indigenous people and speaking more than 4000 languages?  

Research has also shown that where Indigenous communities have control of the land, forests, and biodiversity flourish. This can be attributed to their traditions that protect the earth and way of life that lives in harmony with the surroundings.

However, as of today, the livelihood and existence of these communities the world over are under threat. Rapid urbanization and mineral excavations are taking over their sacred lands, identities, and religions. They have become victims of harsh weather conditions brought about by reckless activities of the modern world like deforestation.

Since its inception, Indigenous communities and voices have been an essential part of URI. URI is working, learning, and changing together with grassroots organizations to keep the voices, share knowledge and protect the rights, traditions, and beliefs of the Indigenous people around the world.

Indlondlo ZULU Dancers, Art and Cultural Center CC is KwaZulu-Natal CC, in South Africa shares their traditional dances at various functions like weddings, and thanksgiving ceremonies. They bring a piece of their culture to the world through their dances, costumes, and performances. They also participated in the 5th global conference on the elimination of child labor and pledged to unite through culture.

Indlo zulu Indigenous group
A collage showing Indlondlo Zulu Dancers at various events 

“I have been invited to regional consultations to share how to use indigenous knowledge.”

Elizabeth is from Prometra, an association in Uganda utilizing traditional medical and cultural knowledge to support the poor health conditions and inadequate modern health care.

When the world marked World Environment Day, Tagore Peace Circle CC in India celebrated this day by planting fruit trees with the indigenous community in Sehala village. This Indigenous community has been protecting the environment for centuries.


The indigenous people of Argentina, through Comunidad Cosmica, taught children about the indigenous cosmovision in Buenos Aires. 

Comunidad Cosmica

Cultural infusion CC has also organized programs that unpack the importance of intercultural understanding in overcoming disparities between culturally diverse people. This has been achieved through dialogue, music, dances, and food among other projects. They also facilitated the kinder dreaming and caring for the country's indigenous programs for 3-18 years old

Cultural Infusion

Celebrating Winter and Summer solstice Together

Message from Audri Scott Williams, URI Global Trustee

The Indigenous Peoples, also known as Original People, Aborigines, in short, Peoples. The Ancestral realm, the Peoples who lived in the time when people lived from an exchange, from understanding life about Nature. People who, based on observation, understood the changes of the Cycles and knew that a cycle ended, and another Cycle began, understood that when the Sun moved away or approached the Earth, they were very important moments for the process of life. This knowledge was transmitted from generation to generation by our Ancestors who taught us that at this time there is a natural order, a physical and spiritual renewal.

That is why every year, for this part of the hemisphere (South), we celebrate the arrival of winter, June 20 at night, bonfires are made, to spend the whole night until dawn on the 21, waiting for the return of the Sun, with songs and dances. And for the northern hemisphere, we celebrate in very similar ways. We invite you to join us in the celebration of the Summer Solstice from both the Southern and Northern hemispheres. We invite you to share, dialogue, and talk about something significant that happens at the same time, where Duality, Summer-Winter), complement each other.

The virtual meeting will take place on June 30 at 1 pm in Argentina, 3 pm US Central Time, and 2 pm Eastern Time. You can bring food, drink, and an offering to celebrate the new year of Mother Earth, with a toast!

URI recognizes all Indigenous communities in the world and is committed to working with CCs in these regions to support these communities and work together to create a world of peace, love, tolerance, co-existence, and protection of mother earth.

Watch the video recording of the winter and summer solstice zoom call celebrated on 30 June 2022. The recording is in Spanish.