Zapatista Summer: Schools for Chiapas
Photos and article by Peter Brown
Photos and article by Peter Brown
Published with permission
PHOTOS: 1 Roasted corn; 2 Mayan musicians visit a delegation dormitory and display weavings which are now on-sale in the Schools for Chiapas on-line store; 3 Roasted and boiled corn on same fire 4 En pie de lucha...great mural in Caracol II, Oventic. Not sure how to translate. Does anyone have suggestions about capturing the idea in English? 5 The Good Government Board in the Zapatista center of Roberto Barrios receive many boxes of the enthomath booklets for us in autonomous schools. 6 Schools for Chiapas delegates pitch in to help grind the daily corn at the Paul Mann Memorial School in Lucio Cabanas, Chiapas, Mexico. 7 Harvested beans with horse grazing. 8 Volunteers at work. 9 Zapatista students worked hard to grown these beans that will become an important part of their school meals during the fall of 2010.
Zapatista territory ~ Summer 2010
by Peter Brown
Schools for Chiapas
Lluvia… tanto lluvia. Endless mud, endlessly sweet corn, and endless rainbows endlessly kissing this land of struggle with reckless abandon.
It always rains a lot in Chiapas, but August is full-on rainy season. The downpours keep the country-side super-green while the rain and soil keep hundreds of thousands of Mayan farming families fed.
This summer Schools for Chiapas delegations have eaten young corn-on-the-cob tortillas alongside students, teachers, and families in several communities in three of the five autonomous zones or caracoles. We have built corn storage containers, constructed schools, worked with indigenous Melipona bees, donated to many projects, cleaned orchards, all the while marveling at rainbows and Mayan dreams of a better world.
In August the rivers and streams of Chiapas often overflow their banks. A syrupy red-brown liquid flows everywhere. These floods meet oceans of muddy water cascading down the hilly footpaths of the Tzotzil, Tzeltal, Tojolabal, Mam, y Chol peoples. Rainbows ark high above the streams - and the puddles are often covered with clouds of butterflies distracting and startling unsuspecting visitors.
We have been sustained and strengthened by our time this summer with the Mayan rebels of the Mexican southeast.
We hope these photos from our summer will sweeten your hearts, inform your minds, and enrich your souls. And we invite you to join us today, tomorrow, or soon in the misty mountains and steamy jungles of Chiapas. Whenever you make the trip, our Mayan hosts will welcome you with laughter, honesty, and a profound commitment to save Mother Earth.
Schools for Chiapas provides resources and training for autonomous education centers and schools in the misty mountains and steamy jungles of the Mexican southeast.
Schools for Chiapas also sponsors and organizes a variety of cultural and educational programs at the international level in support of popular struggles for dignity, democracy, and justice. Please consider purchasing a gift item from the wide variety of Chiapas products at our online store. Our volunteer travel programs to Chiapas, international speaking tours and the solidarity growing of GE-free Mayan corn have been particularly successful.
Schools for Chiapas was first inspired by the emerging Zapatista education system which continues to be conceived and implemented by indigenous women and men living in rural Mayan communities of Chiapas. Today Mayan children and adults in Chiapas live and learn in community-run, Zapatista centers that promote indigenous language and traditions while charting an independent path for indigenous development based on dignity, democracy, and justice. These programs of education for literacy, education for health, and education for ecological agriculture are truly unique and inspirational.
If you live in or near Chiapas, or if you live anywhere else on our Mother Earth; we invite you, your family and friends to join us and the Zapatistas in the joyful struggle to birth a new and better world. !Hasta la Victoria , ZAPATISTA!