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Native Groups In The Amazon(Kamsá)



The Kamentza People, also called Kamsá, Kamëntšá, Camsá or Kamnsá, inhabit their ancestral territory in the Sibundoy valley, in the middle of the eastern mountains of the southern Colombian Andes, in a space of transition and integration of the Andean and Amazonian worlds. . The Kamentza people have councils in the municipalities of Sibundoy, San Francisco, Mocoa, Orito, Villa Garzón, San Miguel and Bogotá. Its greatest presence is in the Upper Putumayo, than in the municipalities of Sibundoy and San Francisco, but with an important migration towards the Middle Putumayo, in the municipalities of Mocoa and Villa Garzón.


The communities on which this case is based correspond to those who live in the Sibundoy Valley and in the high mountains that surround it in the foothills of the Colombian Massif, the most important water star in Colombia, and therefore the place of thousands of water sources, with lagoons in the High Mountains, moors and ecosystems rich in flora and fauna.


The municipality of Sibundoy has the highest Kamentza population density, and the main administrative center of the Kamentza town is located at the corner of its main square, the facilities of the Cabildo de Sibundoy, being also very present in the iconography of the central park with the presence of a series of statues relating to the Kamentza worldview. According to the Cabildo, as of 2014, 6,029 Kamentza indigenous people live in the municipality of Sibundoy, distributed in 1,476 families, which correspond to 58% of the total Kamentza population, as well as 42% of the population of the municipality.


Kamentsa-kamsa culture

His system of representation is based on the relationship with magical and medicinal plants. The yagé constitutes the central axis of their worldview, the Shaman being the figure in whom the knowledge for its management falls. Among the customs that still persist are: the carnival that is celebrated on the Monday before Ash Wednesday in which food is offered to the souls, the forgiveness ceremony and the marriage council ceremony. In recent years, it has been possible to recover the knowledge of traditional medicine, thanks to the construction and start-up of the Botanical Garden called Leandro Agreda, where local botanists investigate the medicinal benefits of the traditional plants of the region and of the Amazon jungle.



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