Social Entrepreneurship Is Taking Over the Startup Ecosystem

Versión en Español a continuación

Family photo of Google Actívate Barcelona

I got to the University of Barcelona on Monday morning for the first day of my entrepreneurship training. I was already familiar with the model – a few months ago, I travelled to Bilbao to attend a digital marketing course, hosted by the local university and organized by Google Actívate, a training division of the technology giant in Spain which offers free courses to people interested in the startup and digital worlds. I was curious, though, about this one. How to train an entrepreneur in three days?

The 300 people in the auditorium were advised: don’t give up, you won’t regret it! Becoming an entrepreneur is tough, the Google ambassador says, but you have to deal with the turnarounds of the business world. OK, I got the message.

I was part of Group 22 (out of 29) of participants that mostly came from other countries, except for two Spanish girls (one of whom left for lunch and never came back). A mixed and international group with very different backgrounds, including a nurse, a musician, a designer, a DJ, a salesman, a student, a hospitality executive and me.

On the first assignment, we were all invited to tell the rest of us about our passions, what we think the world needs, and what are the trends for the future. And, over and above all this, decide which challenge we want to address over our 3 working days.

Then a surprise came.

Out of all 29 groups, only one decided not to take the social entrepreneurship path. As for the rest of our “colleagues” on that very first morning, they were all convinced that the issues the world faces and the trends for the future are all related to our passions, namely: healthy food, better relationships, smart cities, safe environment, gender equality. Which convinced me that there is a new generation of entrepreneurs, more interested in making the world a better place than on making blind profits.

The next two days took the path every training takes: lots of theory, some practical tasks, presentations, discussions. People trying to work together, pitching, business canvasing, and having beers after all this. Group work and personal growth. Motivational business cases, personal advices. I had to learn to change opinions many times, overcome my rusty Spanish and try to sell our idea to people in the streets. I heard I say ‘no’ too many times and this is not good for me, neither is it for the group. I had meaningful conversations with amazing people during lunch.

On the last day, everybody was excited to pitch their ideas to the other groups. ‘Google may buy it’, some hoped. ‘We’re taking this further’, many others planned. Most of them were deeply in love with their projects, passionate about the positive difference they can bring to their communities or to the planet. I for one, have to confess I was completely excited with ours – an app that can choose the fastest, cheapest or cleanest means of transportation for a given destination, according to your priorities. We might decide to take that one further.

I left an hour before the end of the training (yes, I broke the deal), feeling hopeful about us as a society. I felt that social entrepreneurship is taking over the startup world, which is the seed for a better business world. Young and old, Europeans and Latin Americans, executives and musicians, we’re all working for the social good. There’s hope.

Written by Vívian Soares


El Emprendimiento Social se está apoderando del ecosistema de las startups

En un Lunes frío, llegué a la Universidad de Barcelona para el primer día de mi formación de emprendimiento. Ya estaba familiarizada con el modelo: hace unos meses, viajé a Bilbao para asistir a un curso de marketing digital, organizado por la universidad local con Google Actívate, una división de capacitación del gigante tecnológico en España que ofrece cursos gratuitos a personas interesadas en los mundos digital y de las startups. Tenía curiosidad, sin embargo, sobre este. ¿Cómo entrenar a un emprendedor en tres días?

Se aconsejó a las 300 personas en el auditorio: ¡no desistas, no te arrepentirás! Convertirse en empresario es difícil, dice el embajador de Google, pero debe hacer frente a los cambios en el mundo de los negocios. Vale, recibí el mensaje.

Fui parte del Grupo 22 (de 29) de participantes que en su mayoría provenían de otros países, a excepción de dos españolas (una de las cuales se fue a almorzar y nunca regresó). Un grupo mixto e internacional con orígenes muy diferentes, que incluyen una enfermera, un músico, un diseñador, un DJ, un vendedor, un estudiante, una ejecutiva de hospitalidad y yo.

En la primera tarea, todos fuimos invitados a compartir nuestras pasiones, lo que creemos que el mundo necesita y cuáles son las tendencias para el futuro. Y, por encima de todo esto, teníamos que decidir qué desafío queremos abordar durante nuestros 3 días de trabajo.

Entonces, una sorpresa.

De los 29 grupos, solo uno decidió no tomar el camino del emprendimiento social. En cuanto al resto de nuestros “colegas” en la primera mañana, todos estaban convencidos de que los problemas que enfrenta el mundo y las tendencias para el futuro están relacionados con nuestras pasiones, a saber: alimentos saludables, mejores relaciones, ciudades inteligentes, medio ambiente, igualdad de género. Lo cual me convenció de que hay una nueva generación de empresarios, más interesados ​​en hacer del mundo un lugar mejor que en obtener beneficios a ciegas.

Los siguientes dos días tomaron el camino que toma cada capacitación: mucha teoría, algunas tareas prácticas, presentaciones, discusiones. Trabajamos juntos, lanzamos ideas, hicimos negocios y tomamos cervezas después de todo esto. Mucho trabajo en grupo y crecimiento personal. Escuchamos casos comerciales motivacionales y consejos personales. Tuve que aprender a cambiar de opinión muchas veces, superar mi verguenza de hablar un mal español e intentar vender nuestra idea a la gente en las calles. Escuché que digo ‘no’ muchas veces y esto no es bueno para mí, tampoco lo es para el grupo. Tuve conversaciones significativas con personas increíbles.

El último día, todos estaban emocionados de presentar sus ideas a los otros grupos. “Ojalá Google lo compre”, algunos esperaban. “Vamos llevar esto más allá”, muchos otros planearon. La mayoría de ellos estaban profundamente enamorados de sus proyectos, apasionados por la diferencia positiva que pueden aportar a sus comunidades o al planeta. Por mi parte, tengo que confesar que estaba emocionada con la nuestra, una aplicación que puede elegir el medio de transporte más rápido, más barato o más limpio para un destino determinado, de acuerdo con sus prioridades.

Me fui una hora antes del final de la capacitación (sí, rompí el trato), sintiéndome optimista sobre nosotros como sociedad. Sentí que el emprendimiento social se está apoderando del mundo de las startups, que es la semilla de un mundo empresarial mejor. Jóvenes y viejos, europeos y latinoamericanos, ejecutivas y músicos, todos trabajamos por el bien social. Hay esperanza.

Do you know that, in 2010, Syria was a peaceful and wealthy country, the land of several UNESCO World Heritage Sites, with a steadily growing tourism industry? Damascus, the capital, and Aleppo, were beautiful and lively places, with a strong traditon od trade and flourishing businesses. That was only seven years ago; today, whenever Syria is mentioned, it is war and refugees that first come to mind.

Aleppo residents internally displaced have begun to return.  Photos UNHCR
Aleppo residents internally displaced have begun to return. Photos UNHCR

Last month, the UNHCR launched a multimedia platform, developed in partnership with Google, that uses technology, data visualization, videos, maps and photos to reach to a global audience about the real situation in Syria. Using the latest trends in content marketing, the Searching for Syria website is more than a journalistic project – it’s an educational tool that answers the most asked questions put through to Google worldwide.

. What was Syria like before the war?

. What is happening in Syria?

. Who is a refugee?

. Where are Syrian refugees going?

. How can I help Syrian refugees?

A family walks across the desert terrain towards the Al Hol camp for refugees and displaced persons. Photos UNHCR
A family walks across the desert terrain towards the Al Hol camp for refugees and displaced persons. Photos UNHCR

“Searching for Syria aims to dispel myths and misconceptions about Syria and refugees and provide an entirely fresh look at the biggest humanitarian tragedy of today,” said UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi. “This is a fantastic project with Google that allows us to pinpoint and answer the five key questions about Syrian refugees and displaced that audiences most want to know and help us rally much needed support and funding for our humanitarian effort.”

“We’re proud to work with the UNHCR to develop Searching for Syria to help raise awareness and inform the world on the human cost of the ongoing conflict and the refugee crisis,” said Jacquelline Fuller, Vice President of “The scale of the Syrian refugee crisis is difficult for most of us to fathom, but the questions on Searching for Syria are a reflection of many a people’s desire to understand. Among the top searches in Germany, France, and the UK last year was: What is happening in Syria?”

Jankidar, a 31 years old Syrian student who fled to Lebanon. Photo UNHCR
Jankidar, a 31 years old Syrian student who fled to Lebanon. Photo UNHCR

Through the platform, the audience learns interesting facts like the actual number of Syrian refugees and where they are fleeing to – mostly neighbouring countries like Iraq and Lebanon. The vast majority doesn’t go to Western Countries. The content is presented through short editorial passages, refugee profiles, photographs and videos. Users can also share content via social networks, donate or sign up to UNHCR’s #WithRefugees global petition asking the world leaders to ensure education for refugee children, adequate shelter and livelihoods for refugee families.

The “Searching for Syria” website is available in English, French, German and Spanish with an Arabic version soon to follow.

Horyou is the Social Network for Social Good, which connects, supports and promotes social initiatives, entrepreneurs, and citizens who help the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals to build a more harmonious and inclusive world. We invite you to Be the Change, Be Horyou!


Hermes Investment Management is one of the UK’s largest institutional asset managers, advising in both the public and private sectors. What makes Hermes stand out in the crowded market of wealth management is its values or, more likely, the CEO that cultivates them.

On a preliminary search of Saker Nusseibeh, I came across words like ‘stewardship’ or ‘responsible capitalism’, or again statements like ‘We believe that better governed companies create a better society for our investors to live in’, all things often more associated with social enterprise than high finance. I was excited to meet him.

Nusseibeh studied medieval history to PhD level and I was intrigued as to whether this critical academic training gave him a pluralist attitude and the ability to see a situation from all angles and solve it? It was an unequivocal yes. He said it is essential for any leader to think and act rationally in any situation. He champions cross collaboration, saying that when recruiting, he is most interested in candidates with diverse profiles for ‘diversity helps nurture innovation in teams’.

Something that may well have been the deal breaker in winning the title of Global Investor CEO of the year is the culture that he cultivates among his staff that gets half of their bonus each year for ‘being nice’. As vague as this may sound, Nusseibeh assures that it’s simple: ‘we reward attitude. Kindness and care towards your colleagues and clients ensure that every day runs smoothly.’

I agree with him, mentioning my training in yoga that teaches that conflict and tension are wasted energy that does not serve us and is certainly no addition to any workplace.

On a more business note, Hermes have adopted a model that helps cultivate more sustainable behavior in the world of investing, as stated in their latest published survey ‘Responsible Capitalism’: ‘Investment decisions should be about outcomes that are not purely nominal but allow savers to retire into a stable social system’.

Horyou team member Dearbhla Gavin with Saker Nusseibeh
Horyou team member Dearbhla Gavin with Saker Nusseibeh

During the interview, Nusseibeh repeatedly referred to ‘holistic profits’. Intrigued, I asked him to clarify. ‘Reasonable, sustainable companies have a social license to exist; they are part of society, their presence impacts on society and has no right to impact negatively on the majority while benefiting just the few’ he says.

I asked him about his industry predictions for the short to medium term. More specifically, did he think that sustainable business possible? That profit can exist without social cost?

He says that he has never witnessed client demand for measured social impact and transparency like he has in the last twelve months: ‘a key part of Hermes’ strategy is ‘stewardship’, i.e. being completely accountable and responsible for all that they invest in’.

Nusseibeh predicts that attitudes to environmental and social governance will be a key measure of a company’s development and growth over the next year.

Tube-riding home, I read through their survey ‘Responsible Capitalism’.

Statistics peppered each page but in keeping with what I had witnessed at the event all day, they weren’t measures of company growth or consumer confidence in the brand, but social statistics; figures illustrating female representation on boards, or diversity in the workplace, or energy efficiency. In the same vein as Bloomberg hosting a day long conference dedicated to good business, it was a sign of the times to see social impact highlighted on every page of a global asset management survey.

It is no longer the economy at one end and society at the other. As Nusseibeh said himself: ‘we own the economy, we all have a stake, we benefit and we lose out, our fate is in our own hands’.

By Dearbhla Gavin


En 2007, les médias du monde entier découvraient que Google soutenait une tribu amazonienne dans ses efforts contre la déforestation illégale via technologie et internet. Ce fut un impressionnant bond en avant pour ce peuple autochtone. Aucune tribu n’avait encore fait un tel usage du web et de ses outils pour faire entendre leur voix et défendre leur forêt. Cette tribu, ce sont les Suruis. Et leur leader charismatique, Almir Narayamoga Surui, parcourt le monde en long et en large, roulant sa bosse de conférences en forums internationaux pour mettre en avant le problème de la déforestation chez lui en Amazonie. Horyou l’a rencontré pour en savoir plus sur son humble quoiqu’ambitieuse mission de faire évoluer les consciences et de promouvoir une responsabilisation environnementale, sociale et économique.

English version available here Versão em português disponível aqui

L’image des communautés autochtones autour du monde évolue. Et vous, quelle direction la voudriez-vous voir prendre dans 20-30 ans ?

Notre rôle est de travailler sur la conscience pour qu’on aie un monde qui évolue avec responsabilité : responsabilité environnementale, sociale et économique en utilisant la technologie comme un outil de construction de ces avancées pour changer les modèles de développement. Je parle en faveur d’un développement qui pense à l’être humain en premier, à la qualité de vie. Avec notre travail, j’aimerais que dans 20 ans le monde aie commencé à suivre les pistes que nous mettons en place aujourd’hui.

Dans la société moderne occidentale, l’individualisme égoïste a beaucoup été utilisé comme un moteur, une raison d’être de l’existence. Quel est votre regard sur cette attitude ?

Je pense que l’individualisme est un facteur qui peut et est en train de détruire la société. Mais avec une vision culturelle, je pense que la pensée collective, le droit collectif, le respect collectif peuvent encore nous sauver de cette déliquescence. Je ne vois pas d’autre chemin; si on a des opinions divergentes, on doit au moins réussir à former un consensus, des outils qui peuvent nous montrer le chemin en fonction des capacités de chacun.

Almir Surui (à droite)
]3 Almir Surui (à droite)

Plus précisément, dans le cadre tribal Surui, si un enfant par exemple, ou un individu fait preuve d’égoïsme, quelle sera la réponse du clan ?

Chez nous, un enfant ne va pas réagir avec égoïsme [rires], on a pas ce malheur. Si moi je suis le père et que je suis égoïste moi-même, alors il va le prendre de moi [rires]. En tant que parents, nous devons servir d’exemples en matière d’éducation en premier lieu. Si mon fils me voit me permettre d’avoir un comportement délétère, il ne va pas comprendre et va vouloir faire la même chose. On reste en général facilement influencé par l’exemple et l’avis de nos parents, c’est pour cela qu’il faut être prudents dans nos agissements.

Pour ce qui concerne les adultes, chacun choisit ses propres problèmes, c’est comme cela qu’on comprend les choses dans ma société. Si je fais quelque chose de mal, automatiquement ce dérapage va me répondre, il n’y a rien besoin de faire car le retour de flamme se fait de lui-même. Ceux qui font du mal à d’autres par exemple, on ne peut pas leur donner justice nous-mêmes, c’est le temps qui va se charger de le faire. Si je punis moi-même cette personne, en fait je suis en train de me souiller avec son crime et je vais devenir en quelque sorte co-responsable. Celui qui fait vraiment du mal, s’il se trouve au sein d’une assemblée, personne ne va l’applaudir, tout le monde va se dire “qu’est-ce que c’est que cet homme ?” et sa propre honte va le tuer.

Je crois que rien n’est pré-défini, ce qu’on doit faire ou dire, ce que je veux dire c’est que le consensus va nous indiquer ce qu’il y a à changer, à corriger pour atteindre notre objectif. Si moi je dis que je ne suis pas d’accord et que je tourne le dos à la négociation, on ne va jamais pouvoir corriger nos erreurs et progresser vers un meilleur avenir mutuel.

Tu es connu pour avoir fait passer la tribu Surui dans la modernité, plus précisément grâce à internet, est-ce que tu peux nous raconter ce processus ?

Ces dernières années, j’ai beaucoup analysé la souffrance de mon peuple. Et j’ai décidé que mon peuple, les Surui, ne sera pas une victime de tous les processus modernes, que nous allons participer aux discussions, aux préoccupations, aux propositions qui font le monde à partir de nos connaissances que nous avons sur la forêt. Après avoir décidé de cette vision, il restait à définir la méthode et les outils dont nous aurions besoin: la technologie, internet. Pour commencer, les gens doivent savoir qui nous sommes, connaître l’endroit dans lequel nous vivons, nos préoccupations et quelles sont nos propositions pour les problèmes qui nous sont désormais communs. L’information commence à arriver là ou avant elle n’arrivait pas. Alors on a commencé à comprendre comment on peut s’exprimer dans ces discussions internationales. Par exemple, quand on participe à un événement [forum, colloque, etc), les gens qui nous y invitent ont été rencontrés lors d’un autre événement précédent, c’est un réseau de communication qu’on doit soutenir et alimenter avec des propositions responsables grâce notamment à internet.


En 2007, un article est sorti, repris par de nombreux médias, qui annonçait qu’une tribu amazonienne avait obtenu le soutien de Google pour les aider à traquer la déforestation illégale. [C’était les Surui bien sûr, et] est-ce qu’on peut considérer que ça a marché ?

Oui, ça a marché: le territoire Surui est aujourd’hui cartographié en 3D sur Google Earth. De plus, ils nous aident, viennent former nos gens à utiliser leurs outils, faire une carte, poster sur YouTube, etc. Et c’est nous-mêmes qui sommes allés les chercher, pas l’inverse. C’est une conquête de notre peuple qui nous aide à communiquer avec le gouvernement brésilien en matière de déforestation [ndlr: via des revendication circonstanciées, très précises et documentées], et avec le monde entier. Si le gouvernement était en train de remplir son rôle, on n’aurait pas besoin de faire ce genre de choses.

Si vous aviez un message d’espoir à adresser au monde, quel serait-il ?

Vous devez croire que vous êtes importants, on doit croire qu’on est important. Vous devez croire que c’est vous qui allez changer le monde, car il ne change pas tout seul. Il a besoin de l’être humain et l’être humain a besoin de lui. Alors c’est un chemin du changement que nous devons construire et ainsi on peut espérer de construire un monde meilleur pour tous.

par Vincent Magnenat


    In 2007, it hit the worldwide media that Google was supporting an Amazonian tribe to track illegal deforestation using technology and the Internet. It was a first and impressive move for this autochthon people, as no tribe had yet used the Internet and technology to speak up or defend its forest. The tribe is the Surui people and today its leader, Almir Surui, travels the world to conferences and Forums to speak about the state of deforestation in Brazil, his home. Horyou sat with him and talked about his humble mission to change attitudes and promote environmental, social and economic responsibility.

    Version Francaise disponible ici Versão em português disponível aqui

    The image of autochthon communities around the world is evolving. Where would you like to see it heading in 20 – 30 years?

    Our role is to improve the public’s awareness so that we can move towards a world that progresses responsibly. This implies environmental, social and economic responsibility by way of using technology as a tool to construct and modify the development models that we have today. I advocate a development that puts humanity first, before quality of life. With our work, I would like that in 20 years the world has started following the steps we put in place today.

    In our modern western society, selfish individualism is a source of motivation, a reason to live. What is your perspective on that attitude?

    I believe that individualism is a factor that can and is destroying society. From my cultural vision, I think that collective thinking, collective rights, collective respect can save us from this mentality. I don’t see any other way, if we have varying opinions, we should at least be able to reach a consensus, find a device that can show us the way to work with each other, each with his own capacity.

    Almir Surui (right)
    ]4 Almir Surui (right)

    More concretely, within the Surui tribe, if a child or an adult for example acts selfishly what is the response of the clan?

    Back home, a child would never act selfishly (laughs); we don’t have that misfortune. If I, the father, am selfish, then my child would learn from me to be selfish too (laughs). As parents, we need to set examples in terms of home education. If my son sees me act in a nonsensical manner, he won’t understand and will want to do the same thing. We are generally easily influenced by the examples and advice of our parents, which is why we must be careful with the way we act.

    As far as adults are concerned, everyone chooses their own problems; that is how we approach things in my society. If I do something wrong, this fault will come back to haunt me. Whatever one chooses to be, there will be consequences. Those who harm others for example, it is not up to us to enact justice, time will take care of that. If I myself punish this person, I will be staining myself with his crime and I will be an accomplice to his crime. The person who does a lot of harm will not be applauded during an assembly; everyone will ask “Who is this man” and his own shame will be the death of him.

    I believe that nothing is engraved in granite; what we must do or say is not pre-defined. Consensus is our indicator on what must change and be corrected to reach our objectives. If I disagree and turn my back on negotiating, we will never be able to correct our mistakes and progress towards a better future together.

    You are known for having allowed the Surui tribe to transition into the modern world, more specifically through the internet, can you tell us about this?

    In the past few years, I have analyzed and observed the suffering of my people. I then decided that my people, the Surui, will not be victim to these modern procedures, that we would get involved in discussions, as well as concerns and solutions offered by the rest of the world in regards to our forest and our knowledge of it. I then needed to define the method by which to do this and so we needed technology and the Internet. Firstly, people had to know who we were and where we live, be acquainted with our occupations and aware of our solutions to this common problem. Information started to flow from a place it had never come from: namely the people living in these forests. We began to understand how we could express ourselves in international debates. For example, when we participate in an event, the people we were invited by, we often meet them at another forum; thanks to the Internet, this is a network that we have to maintain to come up with and share responsible solutions.


    In 2007, an article published in various media, disclosed that an Amazon tribe had the support of Google to track illegal deforestation; this was your tribe. Do you believe it worked?

    Yes, it worked: the Surui territory is today mapped out in 3D on Google Earth. In addition to this, they help and train us to use their tools: create a map, post on Youtube, etc. And it is we who went looking for them, not the other way round. It helps us better communicate with the Brazilian government and the whole world about deforestation (through precise and documented complaints). If the government would play its part, we would not have to be doing this.

    If you had a message of hope to give to the world, what would it be?

    You have to believe you are important; we have to believe we are important. You have to believe that you are the one that will change the world because it does not change on it’s own. It is a path to change that we must build together so that we can hope to build a better world for all.

    Written by Vincent Magnenat Translated by Amma Aburam


      Em 2007, as mídias mundiais descobriram que o Google começou a apoiar uma tribo amazônica em seus esforços contra o desmatamento ilegal, através da tecnologia internet. Foi um progresso impressionante para os Povos Indígenas. Nenhuma tribo tinha feito tal uso da web e das suas ferramentas para fazer ouvir a sua voz e defender a sua floresta. Esta tribo é o Povo Suruí. O seu carismático líder, Almir Narayamoga Surui, viaja pelo mundo extensivamente, participando em conferências internacionais para destacar o problema do desmatamento na Amazônia. Horyou teve o prazer de fazer um belo reencontro com o líder e de saber mais sobre a sua humilde e ambiciosa missão que visa mudar, conscientizar e promover a responsabilidade ambiental, social e econômica.

      Version Française disponible ici English version available here

      A imagem das comunidades indígenas no mundo está mudando. Que direção você gostaria de ver essas comunidades indígenas tomando daqui a 20-30 anos?

      Nosso papel é trabalhar com a consciência para que tenhamos um mundo que evolui com responsabilidade: responsabilidade ambiental, social e econômica, usando a tecnologia como ferramenta de construção desses avanços, para transformar os modelos de desenvolvimento. Eu sou a favor de um desenvolvimento que pensa primeiro no ser humano, na qualidade de vida. Com o nosso trabalho eu espero que, em 20 anos, o mundo comece a seguir as trilhas que estamos implementando hoje.

      Na sociedade ocidental moderna, o individualismo egoísta foi amplamente utilizado como um motor, um propósito para a existência. Qual é sua opinião a respeito dessa atitude?

      Eu acho que o individualismo é um fator que pode estar destruindo a sociedade. Eu acredito que os pensamentos, os direitos e o respeito coletivo ainda nos podem salvar desta decadência. Eu não vejo outro caminho. Se temos opiniões diferentes, devemos pelo menos conseguir formar um consenso e criar ferramentas que possam nos mostrar o caminho, em função da capacidade de cada um.

      Almir Surui (a direita)
      ]4 Almir Surui (a direita)

      Mais precisamente, no âmbito da tribo Surui, se por exemplo uma criança ou um indivíduo demostra egoísmo, qual é a resposta da tribo?

      Em nossa tribo uma criança não irá agir com egoísmo (risos), não temos essa desventura. Se eu sou pai e eu mesmo sou egoísta, então a criança vai pegar esse exemplo de mim (risos). Como pais, devemos dar o exemplo em primeiro lugar ,em matéria de educação. Se o meu filho me vir em um comportamento nocivo, ele não entenderá que é errado e fará o mesmo. De modo geral, continuamos a ser facilmente influenciados pelo exemplo e conselhos dos nossos pais, e por isso que devemos ser cautelosos em nossas ações.

      No que diz respeito aos adultos, cada um escolhe seus próprios problemas. É desta forma que entendemos as coisas na minha tribo. Se eu fizer algo de mau, este desvio irá me responder automaticamente, não precisamos de fazer nada que o retorno se fará sozinho. Aqueles que fazem mal aos outros, por exemplo, nós não podemos fazer justiça nós mesmos, será o tempo que se irá ocupar de o fazer. Se for eu mesmo a punir esta pessoa, ficarei contaminado com o seu crime e, de certa forma, eu me tornarei responsável. Aquele que faz realmente o mal, se ele estiver ao seio de uma assembleia, ninguém o vai aplaudir, todo mundo dirá “Quem é esse homem?” e sua própria vergonha o matará. Eu acredito que nada é pré-definido, o que eu devo fazer ou dizer. O que eu quero dizer é que o consenso nos indicará o que devemos mudar, corrigir, para que possamos atingir nossos objetivos. Seu eu digo que não estou de acordo e viro as costa a uma negociação, nunca poderemos corrigir nossos erros e progredir para um futuro mútuo e melhor.

      Você é conhecido por ter feito a tribo Surui se modernizar, mais especificamente através da internet. Poderia dizer mais sobre este processo?

      Nesses últimos anos eu analisei muito o sofrimento do meu povo. E decidi que meu povo Surui não seria vítima de todo esse processo moderno, e que nós iriamos participar das discussões, preocupações e propostas que fazem o mundo, a partir dos conhecimentos que temos sobre a floresta. Uma vez que decidimos esta visão, faltava definir o método e as ferramentas que iriamos precisar, ou seja, a tecnologia, a internet. Primeiro as pessoas precisam de saber quem nós somos, conhecer o lugar em que vivemos, quais são as nossas preocupações e a nossas propostas para problemas comuns. Dessa forma, as informações começam a chegar onde antes não chegavam. Então começamos a entender como elas podem ser exprimidas nessas discussões internacionais. Por exemplo, quando participamos em eventos como fóruns, simpósio, etc., as pessoas que nos convidam são pessoas que encontramos em eventos anteriores, são uma rede de comunicação que devemos apoiar e alimentar com propostas responsáveis, graças à internet.


      Em 2007, um artigo figurou em inúmeras mídias anunciando que uma tribo da Amazônia (Surui) tinha recebido o apoio do Google para ajudar contra o desmatamento ilegal. Esta ajuda funcionou?

      Sim funcionou, o território Surui está agora mapeado em 3D no Google Earth. Além disso, eles nos ajudam vindo treinar o nosso povo a usar suas ferramentas, a fazer mapas para postar no YouTube, etc. Essa conquista do nosso povo nos ajuda a comunicar com o governo brasileiro em termos de desmatamento [nota: via reivindicações circunstanciais, muito precisas e documentadas], e com o resto do mundo. Se o governo estivesse a cumprir o seu papel, não precisaríamos de fazer essas coisas.

      Que mensagem de esperança você gostaria de transmitir ao mundo?

      Você precisa acreditar que você é importante. Você deve acreditar que só você poderá mudar o mundo, porque ele não mudará por si só. Ele precisa do ser humano e o ser humano precisa dele. Esse é o caminho da mudança que temos que construir. Só dessa forma é que poderemos ter esperança de construir um mundo melhor para todos.

      Escrito por Vincent Magnenat Traduzindo por Edriana Oliveira Major

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