A global livestream event that aims to benefit the Amazon Emergency Fund, an indigenous-led effort providing rapid response grants in that region to address the pandemic, is set for May 28.
Jane Fonda, Morgan Freeman, Carlos Santana, Peter Gabriel and numerous other artists will join indigenous leaders, scientists, and a coalition of NGOs in presentng Artists United for Amazonia: Protecting the Protectors, a livestream event produced by Artists for Amazonia.
The two-hour event will run from 8 PM Eastern to 10 PM Eastern and will be hosted by Game of Thrones co-star Oona Chaplin, who played Talisa Maegyr in the series. The livestream will be available via Facebook and through the event website.
The program will promote the Amazon Emergency Fund, launched last month by a coalition of indigenous organizations, NGOs, and allies to respond to the urgent needs of indigenous peoples of the Amazon threatened by COVID-19.
Funds raised will be used for: immediate prevention and care; food and medical supplies; emergency communications and evacuation; protection and security for indigenous territories; and food sovereignty and community resilience. The Amazon Emergency Fund aims to raise $5 million over the next 60 days for Forest Guardians to protect themselves against the pandemic in all nine Amazonian countries.
The Artists United for Amazonia livestream will feature living-room musical performances, interviews, and calls to action. Performers include Herbie Hancock, Rocky Dawuni, Butterscotch Clinton, Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, Cary Elwes, Alfre Woodard, Wade Davis, Wagner Moura, and Brazilian Grammy winners Ivan Lins and Luciana Souza.
Others participating include Jane Goodall, Tom Bergeron, Ed Begley Jr., Frances Fisher, Wagner Moura, Matti Caspi, Suyan Caspi, Wendie Malick, Scottie Thompson, Kali Uchis, Rocky Dawuni, Celine Cousteau, Matthew Modine, Q’orianka Kilcher, Chloe Smith from Rising Appalachia, Luciana Souza, Sonia Guajajara, Angela Kaxuyana, Nina Gualinga, Benki Piyako, Mapu Huni Kuin, Lizardo Cauper, Thomas Lovejoy, Carlos Nobre, Atossa Soltani, Leila Salazar-López, Christina Miller, and Wade Davis.
“This event is part of an extraordinary alliance of organizations and individuals dedicated to preserving the most biodiverse region on Earth,” said Sarah duPont, founder of Amazon Aid Foundation and co-director, River of Gold. “Illicit and unregulated gold mining is one of the most dangerous forms of deforestation in the Amazon Basin and releases toxic mercury into the ecosystem. Since the pandemic, gold mining has exploded across the Amazon and into indigenous territories bringing with it violence and COVID-19. Now, the Amazon is at the tipping point and the protectors of the Amazon are under dire threat. What happens in the Amazon affects us all.”
Leila Salazar-López, Executive Director of Amazon Watch, added: “The Amazon and its peoples are in a state of emergency due to climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a crime against nature and a crime against humanity. It is a time for all to unite and act in defense of the forest and in solidarity with the indigenous and traditional peoples across the Amazon who are protecting this great rainforest and our climate for all of humanity and life on Earth.”