How shopping saves Peruvian rain forests isn’t just a vague hope – it’s real! Helping to ‘Save the Rainforests’ can often seem like an abstract concept.  You can sponsor an acre, or donate to amazing organizations (which we’d certainly encourage you to do) – but what if we told you there was a uniquely tangible way to make a difference?  A way that combined sustainable forestry, local economic growth AND the opportunity to bag a real life treasure directly from the Amazon!?
Fierce Nature Handcrafted Brown Wood Statement Necklace from Peruvian artisan Pats‘Fierce Nature’ Handcrafted Higuerilla Wood NecklaceNOVICA is working with several groups, including artisans of the Yanesha tribe deep in the Peruvian Amazon, that are fighting loggers and deforestation and finding other uses for wood that allows for reforestation.

Pats wood carver

Pats Wood Carvers with Bowls

These talented artisans are making handcrafted jewelry, from unique, natural resources. And better yet…they are making such items without destroying natural resources. Let’s take a little trip to South America with Peruvian furniture builder, Jeronimo Cooklin to get an idea of how it all works and how we can all lend support.

Jeronimo Cooklin and daughters

In 1997, Cooklin says he realized his furniture business was consuming many of the tropical hardwoods found in the rain forests. However, a large number of

people also depended economically on the work derived from that business. In 2001, with a desire to make a long-lasting change in the preservation of the forests yet preserve the financial well-being of the Yanesha people of the region, a sustainable project known as Pats was born. “Pats” is the word for “Earth” in the Yanesha language.  The Yanesha of the Palcazú Valley know that they are preserving the future of their community by protecting the integrity of their forest.

The goal of the Pats project is to preserve the forests. The initial concept was developed in the Palcazu Valley region of Peru. The plan was and is to continue expanding to additional regions. When artisans use higuerilla wood to make hand-crafted, exotic jewelry pieces, global consumers can now trust that the wood was grown and harvested in a sustainable manner.

Pats wood carving tools 1

Sustainability…it allows local artisans to preserve the region’s cultural legacies of carving wood while at the same time preserve the forests for future generations.

 Product ID: 288094 Send to a friend Electric Bolt Handcrafted Wood Lightning Bolt Statement Necklace from Peruvian artisan Pats

So each time you wear this charming ‘Electric Bolt’ necklace, you will display your great taste in style and know you’ve made a consumer choice that truly is helping others as well as the environment.

 Eco Discus Fair Trade Hand-carved Bowl of Sustainable Higuerilla Wood in Peru

Imagine the conversations during your next get-together with friends when you set out snacks on an exquisite serving bowl! You might want to even skip the snacks and simply set the hand-carved, sustainable Peruvian wood, ‘Eco Discus’ bowl out as a visual centerpiece. It creates the perfect opportunity to share with others the social, environmental and economic story that comes along with your purchase.

Forest Sigh Artisan Crafted Asymmetrical Wood Bangle Bracelet from Peruvian artisan Pats

Forest Sigh bracelet

Wearing jewelry handcrafted by Pats wood carvers provides the perfect opportunity to talk about your interest in the Andes and helping to preserve Peruvian higuerilla wood (what’s that? your friends ask…) and now you’ve not only taken part in saving the rain forests, you have also inspired others to make the world a little bit better.

*Reprinted from NOVICA*