I hope this finds you and your family well, safe, and healthy.
I am writing to share an update on an important decision we have made this week. We have been closely and continuously monitoring the COVID-19 situation globally and in Peru, staying informed of the latest news related to travel, quarantines, and the pandemic in general. We have also taken advice from numerous western medical professionals and our healers, and listened to the concerns of our staff.
As I previously communicated in September, it has been our intention to reopen in March, 2021, and since then, we have been carefully evaluating the potential risks to our staff, healers and their families, local and Shipibo communities, and our future guests.
After much deliberation and weighing up the many factors involved, we have made the decision to postpone our reopening to June, 2021.
Taking into account the current global situation, we feel that mid-2021 is the most responsible reopening date. Although new cases are now dropping in number in Peru and international flights are reopening, there are serious upsurges of the virus throughout Europe and North America, where most of our guests come from. International travel procedures will also take some time to stabilize over the coming 6 months.
Peru is working hard to resume tourism and open her arms to large numbers of travelers again. However, having been initially hit particularly hard by the virus and after attaining some level of recovery since lockdown measures were put in place, Iquitos (where the Temple is located) and Pucallpa (where our healers are from) do not have the infrastructure or resources to handle major outbreaks as well as most countries in Europe and North America.
We feel a deep sense of responsibility to all of our staff and healers, and do not want to risk bringing the virus into the Temple or be a cause of any further contagion in the rainforest. We’ve therefore decided that it would be much safer to wait for a significant decline in new cases of the virus in Europe and North America before we reopen.
As you can imagine, we are very eager to resume our mission and get back to what we passionately love doing, especially at a time when it is needed now more than ever. Our highly dedicated healers have continued to carry out master plant dietas throughout the year, in preparation for their healing work that lies ahead. With our decision to postpone reopening until June, they are now committing to enter into more dietas over the next six months. By mid-2021, we will have a team of healers more prepared, more committed, and more powerful than ever before!
Emergency Fund for Shipibo Healers & Local Workers
To ensure that we can continue to support our local staff and healers over the next six months, we have increased the goal of our GlobalGiving fundraising campaign. This campaign helps to provide a basic level of financial continuity to cover their significant loss of income during the pandemic, as there is little to no support provided by the government in Peru. If you have the ability to contribute, your support is deeply appreciated and immediately impactful.
And finally, thank you for your continued support, kind words and thoughtful wishes. We are so very much looking forward to reopening and to sharing all of the gifts that are emerging from this challenging yet transformational year.