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Indigenous Leaders Spotlight: Meet Andrea Ixchíu


Photo credit: Nobel Women

“I would like us to start honoring the lives of people who are taking care of our land all while experiencing the effects of climate change and facing violence from governments [like Guatemala’s] and the extractive industries that are causing the climate crisis and perpetuating colonialist behaviors in our lands and territories.”

– Andrea Ixchíu, Storyteller for Human and Environmental Rights

Andrea Ixchíu is one of four global Indigenous Leaders selected to participate in the first cohort of The Christensen Fund’s Indigenous Leaders Program for her work as an environmental and human rights activist.

Andrea is an Indigenous Maya K’iche born in Totonicapán, Guatemala, where she is recognized as a land protector of Totonicapan’s ancestral forest and has also served as an Indigenous community government authority. Alongside ongoing digital attacks, she has survived physical attacks on her life in retaliation to her reporting of illegal loggers operating in the Totonicapán forest.

Andrea works as a filmmaker, journalist, and activist in collaboration with local and international media. In these roles, she has launched local campaigns and youth workshops to denounce gender violence against Indigenous women, starred in the 500 Years documentary, and earned a nomination to participate in the Nobel Women’s Initiative for her opinion column in the Guatemalan newspaper, El Periodico, as well as for her reporting for independent media in Latin America.

She is a coordinator at Hackeo Cultural, a community-based, global initiative that seeks to build and strengthen collective strategies, narratives, and technologies for defending Indigenous territories across Latin America. She also leads the Futuros Indígenas project, which aims to raise actions, not awareness, to face the climate emergency.

Her work continues to uplift Indigenous perspectives and leaders through the power of storytelling and radical activism.

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