Chacolinks was founded in 2000 in Oxford, UK. We gained Charitable Trust status in 2008, and we now have six trustees.
The main focus of our work is to secure the land rights of the Wichí communities of the Itiyuro Basin in Northern Argentina. Some of these have formed a loose indigenous organisation called Zlaqatahyi (or 'Our Forest') to protect their lands. For details of this work and current campaigns, please see the newsletter sections marked Land Rights. We work with Dr John Palmer an Oxford-trained anthropologist, who lives in Tartagal, the main town close to those communities. In addition, two indigenous lawyers, América Alemán and Sarah Esper, carry out the work involving the courts.
We also work to protect the cultural rights and human rights of those we support. The Wichí have often been the target of attack, both by police and by settlers attempting to encroach on their lands. And we also try to protect the communities through legal support for them, in cases involving theft of their resources (such as illegal oil extraction, illegal logging).
In addition we make small payments in cases of urgent need. This has included provision of a safe water supply, supplying blankets, shoes, dress fabrics and skeins of wool and cotton.
We have also provided village signs, and fencing for a market garden in Hoktek T'oi, the largest village in the group.
We have been the grateful recipients of a number of grants. The Funding Network, Oxford was our first one. Lush, the UK ethical cosmetics company, has given us two grants, including one which acts as a fund for those in need of urgent medical attention. Poverty and malnutrition make this a vital need, for which we are very thankful.
We are also very grateful to our loyal supporters whose donatations allow us to continue our vital work.