Words from Our Volunteers
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Galeria de Fotos

"I spent about 4 months at Instituto Araguaia (from July to October 2014).


Instituto Araguaia is a special place. It's filled with more species of birds I could remember to name (in english and portuguese). It's filled with so many fish that catching ten in a couple hours is considered a "bad fishing day". It's filled with sounds of all sorts; the hum of the mutum, the grunts of caymans, the blows of the dolphins, the whines of giant otter cubs; This among all the sounds of the wind in the leaves and chatter of a dozen different birds. It's full of all this and so much more that you would think it could be a little overwhelming. And it is, at first.

To be able to absorb it all, you need to take a second. In a world where the motto is to go go go, it's harder to do then you think.


You take a deep breath of the pure, Amazon filtered air, and begin to feel at peace. While filled with so many unfamiliar sounds, it's also missing others. Honking traffic, roaring airplanes, drunken hollaring, thumping sound systems. These aren't the sounds meant to calm us, just the ones we've become used to.

However make no mistake you are in a city, a whole different kind of city. Where mice crawl through your rooves and eat your soap, where ants and termites fill every crack of every tree and every hole in the ground, where giant otters cubs whine for fish and turtles crawl up from under the sand beneath you.


It's places like this that are our last sanctuaries.


I never considered a day there a day at work, but a privilege. It was an unforgettable experience. One that I have already shared dozens of times and will share countless more for the rest of my life."


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Thank you, JayPeeeee!