Quito, June 14, 2023 – Equitable Origin, through the CEFO Indígena program, is pleased to announce the receipt of the "Connecting the Unconnected" grant by the Internet Society Foundation (ISOC). The grant aims to expand internet access and promote digital equity in the Nangaritza region, benefiting the Indigenous Shuar Federation of Zamora Chinchipe (FEPNASH-ZCh). Equitable Origin will work in close collaboration with the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of the Ecuadorian Amazon (CONFENIAE) in order to implement the activities relevant to this grant.
Access to the internet is a fundamental right that unlocks opportunities for education, communication, and economic development. However, many marginalized Indigenous communities, particularly in remote areas like the Nangaritza region, face significant barriers to internet connectivity. The "Connecting the Unconnected" grant recognizes the importance of bridging this digital divide and empowering underserved communities through improved access.
Equitable Origin's CEFO Indígena program, which focuses on empowering indigenous communities, will utilize the grant to collaborate with FEPNASH-ZCh and CONFENIAE in expanding internet access and promoting digital equity for Shuar communities in the Nangaritza region. The program aims to provide the Shuar people with reliable and affordable internet connectivity by developing a community-based connectivity model which will focus on fostering economic, social, and cultural development.
"We are incredibly honored to receive the 'Connecting the Unconnected' grant from the Internet Society Foundation," said Joaquín Wray, the CEFO Program Director at Equitable Origin. "This grant recognizes the transformative potential of internet access and underscores our commitment to digital equity. Through the CEFO Indígena program, in partnership with FEPNASH-ZCh, we are dedicated to bridging the digital divide and empowering the Shuar community to thrive in the digital era."
The CEFO Indígena team’s expertise in working closely with indigenous communities, with a commitment to social and environmental responsibility, makes the organization an ideal advocate for expanding internet access in the Nangaritza region. The "Connecting the Unconnected" grant represents a significant milestone for Equitable Origin and the CEFO Indígena program's ongoing efforts to promote digital equity and empower marginalized communities.
About Equitable Origin:
Equitable Origin is a non-profit organization that supports companies, communities, and Indigenous Peoples in ensuring responsible natural resource development. Since its founding in Ecuador in 2009, EO has worked with Indigenous Peoples, the private sector, other non-governmental organizations, and governments to foster sustainable development that respects the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities.
About CEFO Indígena:
CEFO is a collaborative initiative with the Coordinator of Indigenous Organizations of the Amazon River Basin (COICA) to connect Indigenous Peoples to relevant resources that help protect environmental and human rights defenders, bring government services to remote areas, increase local capacity for crisis response, improve the safety of Indigenous women, improve access to education for Indigenous youth, and promote economic development in Indigenous communities.
About the Internet Society Foundation
The Internet Society Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the open development, evolution, and use of the internet for the benefit of all people. Through grant programs and initiatives, they work to bridge the digital divide, promote digital inclusion, and support projects that foster equitable access to the internet worldwide.