Sustainable use for wildlife and natural resources
Awareness of community tourism and eco-tourism
Accessibility of education for the children
Capacity building and management of village leaders
Accessibility of basic inputs on food and equipment
The Kuluwayak Organization is very proud to launch Apetina.org!
On this website, we hope to present the latest developments and
information about the local Wayana community, their livelihood and
their culture. We will also present relevant information about the
development of eco-tourism in this area. This information is being
presented for the interest of current and future tourists,
international researchers and the policy makers of the Surinamese
With eco- and community- based tourism as the core of the
sustainable development strategy in Apetina, the Kuluwayak
Organization aims to increase the involvement of the local
occupants. The goal will be two-fold: promote the creation of
employment and other direct benefits for the community, and teach
them to treasure their own unique culture.
Since the awareness program for eco- and community- based tourism
was launched in 2004, the local Wayana community has decreased their
animal trade, opting instead to engage with new tourists in the
employ of tourism. Currently, many have jobs at the local
tourist island-resort on Capasi Island, across from the village off
of the Tapahoni River. In addition, the children of this community
have already felt the direct benefits of Kuluwayak’s efforts, via
the construction of the school building and the teacher’s houses.
Just a few years ago, Apetina was still unknown. Now it is gaining
popularity among tourists because of its unique combination of
culture and wildlife, including a pristine rainforest with granite peaks, cool rapids and rich flora and fauna. We hope that
this website will be successful in assisting its viewers, such as
yourself, in your search for information about Apetina and the local
Wayana community. The Kuluwayak Organization thanks you for your
interest and your time. We hope to see all of you soon!
On behalf of the board of the Kuluwayak Organization,
Hello and welcome
My name is Arnold Arupa and I have been the principal of the Openbare School Kananoe Apetina since October 2006. I first arrived
in Apetina to a school of 83 very shy Wayana children. At that time,
I was the only teacher at the school with the important task of
teaching the youth the official language of Suriname: Dutch.
Initially, the Wayana children lacked confidence because of their
inability to communicate with visitors and lack of “fancy things.”
Since then, there has been much progress, and our school has grown
to include 99 children and 5 teachers. Now, many of the children
engage in conversation with the tourists, asking such questions as:
how are you? What is your name? How is my village? They also love
to sing! Every Sunday we sing in church. The willingness and the
enthusiasm of these children is what motivate me to do my job
My hopes for the children are that they will become something
positive in society, so that they may later contribute back to the
village that helped foster their growth. To that end, the Kuluwayak
Organization has been a very positive and helpful force.
The last grade of the primary school is the sixth grade. We are
currently at the fourth grade. As with the rest of Suriname, these
children will have to pass an exam, so we are doing our utmost
to prepare them for that exam. In addition, the Kuluwayak
Organization is also trying to create a program whereby we can send
the children to Paramaribo to continue their education. If these
children have good shelter in town, I know they can complete their
education to get a good job and earn money in an honest way
I invite you to explore the rest of this website for more
information, and contact Samoe Schelts, President of the Kuluwayak
Organization, if you have any questions.
The children, teachers, and I all look forward to seeing you when
you come to visit us in Apetina!
Until we meet again,