Project Description: The McKenna Academy’s Biognosis project is not just a project, it’s a journey. A journey that takes us deep into the heart of the Amazon, into a world teeming with life, a world that holds the secrets of 150,000 biological specimens. These specimens, currently housed at the Herbarium of the Amazon in Iquitos, Peru, are more than just plants. They are the keys to understanding how indigenous people have harnessed the power of nature for healing.
Our Vision: We stand at the precipice of a new era, an era where the wisdom of the past is not lost but shared. We envision a world where this vast reservoir of knowledge is not only preserved but made accessible for future generations. We believe in the power of shared knowledge and aim to bring the wisdom of the Amazon to the world.
- Revitalizing the Herbarium: We plan to breathe new life into the herbarium, transforming it from a collection of specimens into a living, breathing library of knowledge. We will sort, categorize, mount, photograph, and upload images of the specimens to a globally accessible database. Our goal is to transform the physical location of the herbarium into a world-class facility right in the heart of Iquitos.
- Documenting the Amazon’s Story: We will produce a captivating documentary series that explores the current state of Amazonian traditional medicine and the impacts of globalization, climate change, and tourism. This series will serve as a testament to the resilience and wisdom of the Amazon and its people.
- Preserving Indigenous Knowledge: We will document the extensive knowledge of Juan Ruiz, the current manager of the Herbarium. These learning modules will feature interactive content, augmented reality, and multimedia presentations, providing a rich and immersive learning experience.
- Creating a Virtual Rainforest: We will create an immersive, interactive VR environment that represents the collection in the herbarium. This visionary rainforest will be a virtual space accessible from anywhere in the world, allowing users to explore the biodiversity of the Amazon from the comfort of their homes.
Why Support Us: As the Amazon continues to face threats, it is more critical than ever to share stories from the people who are trying to protect it. Your support will help us preserve, revive, and empower the wisdom of life that only the biodiverse Amazon holds. Join us on this journey into the heart of the Amazon, and together, let’s ensure that the wisdom of the rainforest continues to thrive for generations to come.