Alba Lucy Giraldo Figueroa
Brasilia, Distrito Federal, Brazil
Fellow Since 1986
This profile was prepared when Alba Lucy Giraldo Figueroa was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1986.
The New Idea
An undergraduate philosophy major, Alba went to work with the Nambiquara, a tribe whose population has declined from 14,000 to 500 since the 1940s. After a long career working with another tribe, the Tucano, she now has a clear vision of what's needed built up from this long period of learning and experimenting. She is working over the next several years to make this vision work for the Tucano tribes just south of the borders of Columbia and Venezuela. Her approach could prove important well beyond this region as a workable model for restructuring the failed relationship between modern medicine and traditional health care systems and thought.