About the Noke Koi

The Noke Koi are the natural guardians of the Amazon rainforest. They are the inhabitants of the land and have been living there for millennia — protectors of the land, plants, animals, traditions, language, natural medicines, spiritual wisdom, culture, and their children, to whom they will pass on this sacred role.

“Noke Koi” translates to “True People” or “Meek People.” They are located in the Northeast region of Acre state in Brazil, on the indigenous lands near the Gregório River and Campinas River, close to the border with Amazonas state. For countless generations, they have lived in harmony with each other and their surrounding environment.

Today, their way of life is in jeopardy.

In recent decades, globalization has wrought havoc on the Noke people, perhaps best symbolized by a newly constructed highway that has split their territory in two and brought increased contact with outsiders.

Since the road was built, their livelihood has drastically changed. Animals were scared away as a consequence of pollution, noise from vehicles, and increased human presence. The game they hunted for generations disappeared. They are mostly a pre-agricultural civilization of hunters and gatherers, and today they are plagued by food scarcity. Hunger and poverty have become the new norm.

The increased influence of modern society has brought innovation, but it has also brought some of the calamities of modern civilization: alcohol, drugs, sugar, waste, and a lack of intimacy. They now, as a people, lack proper housing and food, clean water and sanitation, and many other basic human needs to live a dignified life.

This is all changing as a result of the work we have been doing for the past 15 years at Kana Samurai Foundation.