Suriname Program

ACT’s most enduring projects in Suriname are roughly continuous with the organization’s inception. The program’s basis was the ethnobotanical fieldwork of ACT co-founder Dr. Mark Plotkin, who directed his research toward understanding traditional plant uses and treatments of indigenous healers in the region. ACT-Suriname's work emerged from Dr. Plotkin’s desire to help his indigenous colleagues to retain their cultural identity and conserve their environmental heritage in the face of modern change.

Our first two major efforts in Suriname were precedent-setting biocultural conservation initiatives: the consecutive establishment of an intergenerational traditional medicinal knowledge transmission program (“Shamans and Apprentices”) and a series of village-level traditional medicine clinics, and the first large-scale participatory cultural mapping project conducted in the Amazon, using a methodology that we subsequently replicated in Brazil and Colombia.

ACT Suriname Projects

Click the thumbnails or titles to learn about each project area.

Cultural and Land Use Mapping

Ethnoeducation

Increasing Agricultural Yields and Sustainable Income Generation

Indigenous Park Guard Program

Natural Resource and Biodiversity Management

Shamans and Apprentices Program / Traditional Medicine Clinics

ACT Suriname Map Tour

View our ACT Suriname Map Tour to learn more and see where our projects are located.

ACT Suriname News

Posted on Monday, December 12, 2016
ACT is pleased to share Kwamalasamutu - In Pursuit of Human Wellbeing, a short documentary film that highlights nearly two years of participatory research in the Trio indigenous village of Kwamalasamutu, Suriname conducted by ACT-trained indigenous Amazon Conservation Rangers together with students from the University of Utrecht and local partners.
Posted on Tuesday, October 25, 2016
In September and October 2016, The Amazon Conservation Team (ACT) enabled the indigenous community of the rainforest village of Apetina to create six educational murals on the back walls of their local elementary school. Through these murals, ACT seeks to encourage additional local students to complete their village schooling.
Posted on Tuesday, August 16, 2016
In August 2016, ACT participated in the IV International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield in Georgetown, Guyana. ACT-Suriname staff gave a total of six presentations overall, and had a booth with materials for sale and display at the entrance of the conference.

ACT Suriname Field Notes

By: ACT-Suriname
Date: Friday, June 24, 2016

In May 2016, Roché Bhola, one of ACT-Suriname's field station managers, traveled for several weeks to the Trio indigenous village of Sipaliwini together with Dr, Anthony Druiventak, geology professor at Anton de Kom University of Suriname and Joanne Perk, a student from the department of mine

By: Rudo Kemper
Date: Thursday, June 23, 2016
In 2015, the Amazon Conservation Team (ACT) began conducting participatory mapping fieldwork with the Matawai Maroons residing in ten villages along the upper Saramacca River of central Suriname. The process has been deeply enriching to all parties, with remarkable products.
By: Minu Parahoe
Date: Monday, April 25, 2016

The 2016 fieldwork for ACT’s joint project with the University of Utrecht and Surinamese universities is right around the corner. Since 2015, in southern Suriname, ACT has been conducting research in the Trio indigenous village of Kwamalasamutu, focusing on topics defined by the community.