Meet the Community Technicians: (4) Celio Piaguaje
Name: Celio Piaguaje
Role: Community technician
Meet Celio Piaguaje, Siona technician from the community Sototsiayá. At age 40, Celio stands as one of the most experienced workers in the group. Dedicated to agriculture his entire life, Celio truly knows the meaning of hard work. Every day during construction, Celio takes a 45 minute ride on his dugout canoe to be a part of the ClearWater project. On the job, Celio is always willing to lend a hand. Very soon, Celio will be one of the main protagonists in the construction of rainwater catchment units for the Siona nationality. In the meantime, Celio is working with the Cofan and Secoya technicians to the learn about the project he hopes to lead in the years to come.
“I’m here to represent the Siona nationality, working to improve our quality of life and live in better conditions.”
All his life, Celio has always made a living as a small scale farmer, cultivating caco, coffee, yucca and plantains. He remembers when the oil companies arrived to the Siona territory. The companies Texaco and Oxy were responsible for tremendous contamination, deforestation, and the loss plants and animals – he recalls. Today he says he is fortunate for what he has and achieves; he is able to produce good quality crops. Many of his Siona brothers have suffered greatly against the threats of oil and Celio hopes they too are able to have clean water in the future.
*About the bios: These bios were transcribed and written by Adrian Schwartz: Adrian Schwartz is the ClearWater field assistant who is working closely with the community techncians to document their great work. Adrian is French Ecuadorian and is currently studying anthropology and mapping in the United States.