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The sowing of water

The great ‘minga’ (community work)

09 August 2021

“In the Andes of Colombia, communities sow water.”

Our Colombian team have been working in partnership with indigenous peoples and local communities in the Upper Cauca River Basin, focusing on capacity building and systematisation, integrating advanced technology with indigenous and local knowledge.

Hub researchers collaborated with women of the Andean indigenous reservation of Kisgó to organise a mass event known as “sowing water”, in which 22,000 native trees were planted to increase water production in the territory.

The concept of “sowing water” is an Andean rural community epistemology and is a process in which native trees are planted to improve ecological and hydrological health in degraded areas, reviving rivers and lakes, and preserving traditional culture.

The project combined drone technology and GIS software with indigenous and local knowledge of the territory to create a planting and monitoring system that will achieve maximum hydrological prosperity and other benefits from the ecological restoration, as well as cultural preservation through digital documentation and training.

Nora Mueles Fernandez: “It’s very important to support this process because it’s very nice for us as women to be part of this and see ourselves represented.”

Juan Bautista Solarte: “What will happen to our future? Do we continue clearing the forests? Or do we want water?”

Kishú lake has been successfully restored through the sowing of water, and the Kisgó community continues to sow water for the wellbeing of their peoples and their territory.

Experience the process of sowing water in this video. 

"We should take care of water because it will take care of us in the future."

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