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Igor Vianna Sousa

Hometown

Belém, Pará, Brazil

Education

B.A. in Education, Universidade do Estado do Pará (UEPA), Belém, Pará, Brazil. 

Interests

Ecotourism and Recreation, Water Sports, Sport Management, Community-Based Tourism, Protected Areas, Tropical Conservation and Development. 

Experience

My undergraduate degree is on Education at the State University of Pará, Brazil. As a student, I was a member of the “Paulo Freire Center for Popular Education.” Over the past ten years, I have been working in the socio-environmental area. Through water sports, such as canoeing, I have been developing activities that can connect urban people with nature. I have ample practical experience working with water sports, recreation and tourism in the Brazilian Amazon region. I created, and I still manage two pioneering paddle schools in Belém, State of Pará, Brazil. One school is dedicated to kayak teaching, recreational tours, and expeditions and the other school to outrigger canoe teaching, recreational tours, and expeditions including occupational activities with disabled people. Through canoeing activities, my goal is to integrate society and nature as a way for people to conserve natural resources, mainly water, and forests, while at the same time enjoying nature. I believe that ecotourism and outdoor activities are important tools for creating bridges to connect people and the environment, but this contact needs to be transformative and emancipatory, conscious, one that allows people to reflect on their actions and consequences and empower themselves to make decisions that allow for quality of life and respect for other life forms. It is necessary to overcome the tourism outdoor culture exclusively as a consumer product itself. One of the alternatives is to promote outdoor activities and ecotourism as tools for positive transformation.

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