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Every $ counts. Help fund the 1st, largest, multi-sited, multidisciplinary research project on Ayahuasca-assisted Treatment for Mental Health and Addiction.
Brian Rush
Toronto, Ontario
2 Team Members

Help fund the 1st, largest, multi-sited, multidisciplinary research project on Ayahuasca-assisted treatment for mental health challenges, including addiction. This kind of research is difficult to fund through traditional avenues, yet has the potential to improve many lives affected by mental health challenges, including addictions; and to expand knowledge and awareness of the efficacy of plant medicine. 

Please, consider a small donation. 

Please, share with your networks.

Note: This is just the beginning! If we surpass our $25K goal, the additional funds will be rolled forward, to be used for further proposal development and other activities related to securing full funding for the project itself. For example, preparing briefs for government funding bodies and travel costs for meeting with key government or philanthropic representatives to present the project. We will also use the funds for further development and pilot testing of the various tools and methods (e.g. translation). We will be working on securing various funding sources as we move ahead, and due to the success and support of crowdfunding, we will likely use this forum again in the future, to help fund the stages of this project. Thank you for your amazing support!

Video w/ Spanish Subtitles:

VIDEO w/ French Subtitles:

VIDEO w/ Portuguese Subtitles:

Your contributions to this crowdfunding campaign will set in motion much needed research to evaluate the efficacy of Ayahuasca, a plant medicine found in the Amazon. You will be part of an extended and growing web of people around the world who care about the importance of research, plant medicine, and innovation - and you will be rewarded by incentives that support this project and support indigenous artists.

Because of the nature of this research and the early stage of the project, it is difficult to obtain funding through conventional venues. 

What is the research? Why is this research important? Who are we?

We are initiating a research project of a topic and magnitude that has never been done before. The Ayahuasca Treatment Outcome Project (ATOP), will take place over several years, beginning this autumn, and will compare, contrast, and determine the efficacy of Ayahuasca, a millennia old plant medicine indigenous to the Amazon jungle. 

We thank you for your contributions - however large or small they may be! With them we will be able to initiate a project that will work with up to eight (or more) centres in Latin America that use Ayahuasca in conjunction with other complementary healing modalities (i.e. psychotherapy, etc.). 

As an international team of experts with extensive clinical and research backgrounds and personal experience with ayahuasca, we will draw upon our collective experience to develop a cutting edge research protocol that involves thorough follow-up and a longitudinal assessment of treatment efficacy. 

This multi-sited, multidisciplinary project includes contributors from Canada, Peru, Brasil, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, the United States, Australia and Europe. We are clinical psychiatrists and neuroscientists, medical doctors and anthropologists, epidemiologists and curanderos. 

The team is being led by Dr. Brian Rush, Professor, Dept. of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Canada and Scientist Emeritus at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Canada. Other team members include Dr. Dartiu Xavier da Silveira and Renato Filev  at the Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Brasil; Anja Loizaga-Velder, Director of Psychotherapy and Research, Nierika A. C., Chalmita, Mexico; Dr. Jacques Mabit and Dr. Fernando Mendive from Takiwasi Centre for Addictions Treatment and Research on Traditional Medicines, Tarapoto,Peru; Dr. Marcelo Mercante, visiting scholar at Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Brasil and Dr. Luís Fernando Tófoli, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, Brasil. Members of healing centres across Latin America, as well as researchers and curanderos from Europe, US, Costa Rica, and Australia are also invited to be part of the beginning stages of this research. 

Curandero and radio producer Simon Green (AUS) interviews lead researcher Dr. Brian Rush, about ATOP. https://soundcloud.com/quantumlifestudios/brian-rush-atop-podcast

Crowdfund Research?! Why Crowdfunding?

With your help, this project will be initiated in order to work towards a better understanding of treatments for addictions and mental health.

Because of the nature of this research and the early stage of the project, it is difficult to obtain funding through conventional venues. Traditional funding organizations are hesitant to support plant medicine research given its controversial nature as being largely misunderstood.  While this is the reason it is difficult to fund, this is also the fundamental reason why this research needs to be done. This is why we are turning to the crowdfunding community- people like you who believe in the potential of this work. If you cannot donate, even just assisting in spreading the word to your networks is an enormous contribution. We believe that there are thousands of people who are interested in alternative treatment approaches to mental health conditions and addiction, as well as many researchers who are interested in studying psychotropic plants. We are counting on you to help move this research forward. 

We have meaningful and beautiful plant medicine inspired rewards to connect contributors to the project. Please join our project through your contribution!

Who might wish to donate?

Simply put, any person that cares about innovation and forging new territory for the benefit of humanity. Perhaps you are a researcher, an entheogenic aficionado, someone who is interested in or has benefited from Ayahuasca, or you or someone you know, has been affected by addictions and/or mental health issues. Or, perhaps you just believe in us because you are our colleagues, friends and family, and/or love the rewards we've come up!

What We Need & What You Get

  • This meeting will be hosted in Peru, one of Ayahuasca's home countries, where it is not considered illegal to work with this plant medicine. Ayahuasca is also indigenous to the Peruvian Amazon. In countries where Ayahuasca is considered illegal, we will be working with appropriate government agencies to obtain permits to conduct this research.
  • We are aiming to raise $25,000 to cover the cost to bring up to 30 researchers, healers, and other staff to be able to attend the first research design meeting in Tarapoto, Peru, in the Autumn of 2013. The goal will be to meet face to face, to collaborate, to share information, and to ultimately design the research protocol for the project. 
  • The centre in which this meeting will be held, Takiwasi, is an established centre of plant medicine that has been assisting people with addiction and mental health challenges, for 20+ years. 
  • Funds breakdown: 50% of funds raised are needed for transportation and meeting costs; 25%+ of funds will go to cover the cost of the rewards at a fair wage to those who have contributed them; 6% (or 10% if we do not reach our goal) will go to paypal and Indiegogo fees; 15% will go to administration, translation, and other meeting related costs. 0% of funds raised will go to the researchers themselves as they are donating their time and expertise on behalf of their belief in the importance of this medicine and their conviction in propelling this research forward. 
  • Perks: We are thrilled to be working with such special rewards such as beadwork from a Cametsa women's co-op in Colombia; artwork from Peruvian Visionary Artist Juan Carlos Taminchi, and retreats rewards from three centres that employ plant medicine programs- in Peru, Costa Rica, and in Colombia. Please see descriptions below.
  • If we do not reach our entire goal, we will not be able to include as many people in the meeting. The collaborative spread of the group will be limited, however the meeting will continue.  
  • If we exceed our goal, additional funds will go to reimbursing all meeting participants for their costs, and will further go to seed money for the research design, translation, and future phases. 

Other Ways You Can Help

  • If you are going to donate, please donate early in the campaign - help us reach the tipping point quickly. This ensures better attention to the campaign.
  • Help us get the word out and make some noise about our campaign! We've never done this before, and some of us are less social media savvy than we care to admit! Please share!
  • Even a dollar donation is a great help. It contributes to the worldwide interest in Ayahuasca and plant medicine healing and research. Thank you. 
  • Send us comments if you have ideas on how we can get the word out.
  • Pay by credit card (as opposed to Paypal) if you can! There are less fees for us this way


Beadwork: This jewelry comes from the Cametsa indigenous community from the Sibundoy Valley of the Alto Putumayo, Colombia.  The designs are the yage (ayahuasca) visions of master artist Maria Carmen Chincunque Jamioy put into beadwork. She is the head of a women's cooperative that implements the designs into unique pieces of yage inspired jewelry. Together with her husband, Taita Juan Agreda Chindoy, they have won many awards for their traditional art. They have set and are receiving a fair price for their work. We are so happy to work with them. Please note that all pieces are unique. Each piece is made individually and thus slightly different in presentation and color scheme.

Thick bracelets




Small, hand painted masks

Shipibo Tapesty - 1.5 m

[img src="https://d2oadd98wnjs7n.cloudfront.net/file_atta..." unselectable="on" >

Juan Carlos Taminchi- Guardianes de la Sabiduria

Peruvian Amazonian Pipes


Colombia Plant Medicine Retreat with Taita Juan


Integral to this crowdfunding campaign has been a team effort - specific thanks to Simon Green, Quantum Life Studios, for much  work editing, co-producing, titling and working with subtitling and translation of the video, as well as additional advisement and work on this project.

Also, Celina DeLeon for campaign work, including editing and crowdfunding contribution coordination, donations of reward perks, and advisement.

Additional big thanks to:

The Jungle Prescription Team - Robin McKenna, Mark Ellam, and Jeronimo M.M. for support and permission to use footage from their documentary, The Jungle Prescription. 

Dr. Gabor Mate, for his endorsement of this project.

Ian MacKenzie for his assistance in filming Dr. Mate

Chriz Miller for his assistance in production and post.

And everyone else who has supporting this project in some way!

Thank You!! From Brian, Celina, Simon and Dani

raised by 410 people in 1 month
119% funded
No time left
$25,000 CAD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on October 9, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $5CAD
    High Five!

    We thank you. Every single dollar helps! High five! You support Plant Medicine Research - we will send you an email update after the meeting!

    50 claimed

    Sacred Vine Key Chain

    Please add $5 for shipping outside of Canada. We'll send you a keychain made from the ayahuasca vine. We will also send you an email update after the meeting.

    75 out of 75 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $22CAD
    The Key

    Reward just added! Pledge at this level and we will send you a handbeaded keychain beaded by the Cametsa women's collective, inspired by Ayahuasca visions. Your contribution goes towards supporting the collective, as well as help setting in motion this project. Thank you!

    25 out of 50 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $25CAD
    Lend Me Your Ear (Or Hand)

    Please add $5 for shipping outside of US. Hand beaded earrings or thin bracelet from the Cametsa Women's Collective in Colombia. Your donation also supports them!

    39 out of 60 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $50CAD

    Please add $5 for shipping outside of US. Hand made beaded thick bracelet, made by Cametsa Women's Collective, based on Yage/Ayahuasca inspired visions. Your donation also supports the women's collective!

    32 out of 60 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $75CAD

    Please add $5 extra for shipping outside of Canada. We will be happy to send you a signed poster of artwork by Artist Juan Carlos Taminchi - Guardianes De La Sabiduria, and a thin beaded bracelet from the Cametsa Women's collective in Colombia.

    14 out of 50 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $100CAD

    From the Cametsa women's collective in Columbia, your donation will reward you with a hand beaded necklace, thick bracelet and pair of earrings - designs inspired by Ayahuasca visions. Please add $5 extra for shipping outside of the USA. Your donation also supports their initiative.

    21 out of 25 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $150CAD

    Please add $10 for shipping outside of US. We will send you the following from Cametsa collective: small hand painted mask painted by Taita Juan Agreda Chindoy, and a thick beaded bracelet from the Cametsa women's collective.

    4 out of 20 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
  • $400CAD
    Weaver Plus

    Please add $10 shipping outside of Canada. The Shipibo-Conibo are an indigenous people along the Ucayali River in the Amazon rainforest in Perú -- We will send you a beautiful cotton fabric, painted with mud and huito (tree resin), embroidered by hand with intricate designs that have been passed down from parent to child. Size is 1.5m by 1.5m. Design varies as all pieces are individually made. We will also send you a thick, hand beaded bracelet from the Cametsa women's collective, Columbia.

    5 out of 15 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013

    Scholar - Tarapoto, Peru

    We invite you to participate in an 8-day educational workshop at Takiwasi Centre in Tarapoto, Peru. For 20 years Takiwasi Centre has been working on recovery for people with various forms of addictions. This seminar involves an experiential element including plant medicine and a four-day personal retreat (dieta) involving intake of plant teachers. The seminar will also involve lectures and presentations by members of the Takiwasi therapeutic team. November 5-13, 2013

    1 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: November 2013

    Anaconda - Colombia

    Join us for the New Year or in March 2014, in the stunning Sibundoy Valley in the Alto Putumayo of Colombia, home of the Cametsa indigenous community- for an immersion with Taita Juan Agreda Chindoy. Each guest will receive personalized consultations and treatments. Three plant medicine ceremonies led by Taita Juan are complemented by trips to the nearby hot springs and integration practices. Food, lodging, and bilingual translation included. Dec. 28, 2013-Jan 4, 2014 March 22-29, 2014

    2 out of 2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013

    Deep Immersion- Iquitos, Peru

    Journey into self with Shipibo medicine at the Temple of the Way of Light, Iquitos, Peru at their one month ‘Deep Immersion’ healing program combining 12 day ayahuasca workshop and plant dieta w/optional integrative practices including Yoga, Qigong, Taiji, & art therapy throughout the month. The workshop consists of 7 ceremonies held by one male, one female Shipibo healers; consultations, daily floral baths, and steam baths. Group limited to 12 people. Dec. 3, 2013-Jan.2, 2013 (or future dat

    1 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: December 2013
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