Studying and Promoting Public Policy
based on Scientific Evidence and Human Rights

Integrating Ethnobotanicals
as Therapeutic Tools in Contemporary Society

Protecting the Indigenous
Ethnobotanical Practices and their Environments

What ICEERS offers

  • IICEERS Support Service
    Information &
    Psychological Help

  • Information about
    Iboga &

  • Scientific
    Information &

  • Legal
    Information &

What is ICEERS?

The International Center for Ethnobotanical Education, Research & Service (ICEERS) is a philanthropic, tax-exempt non-profit organization (charity) dedicated to 1) the integration of ayahuasca, iboga and other traditional plants as therapeutic tools in modern society, and 2) the preservation of the indigenous cultures that have been using these plant species since antiquity on, their habitat and botanical resources.

ICEERS is dedicated to marshall the forces of the ethnobotanical knowledge of the indigenous peoples and modern therapeutic practice, responding to the urgent need for efficient tools for personal and social development.

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Why do we believe in these plants?

A society has emerged in which worldwide 450 million people suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder, more than 200 million people have a drug dependence and according to the WHO depression will become one of the most important health problem in first world countries over the next 20 years. Beyond these statistics lay the quiet suffering of perhaps the majority of our society, who live under the radar of official, medical prognoses; those with unresolved trauma, damaged self esteem, unhealthy relationships, social anxiety and a vast spectrum of neuroses interfering with their personal growth process. It is clear that new strategies of intervention to detect and solve the recurrent psycho-social problems we face today are greatly needed.

The plant species ICEERS focuses on have been used for centuries or even millennia by indigenous and pre-industrial societies to address medical, psychological and social issues critical to social relations and survival. Their capacity to induce profound introspective psychological states, and physiological and behavioral adjustments make them promising tools for catalyzing therapeutic programs or personal growth processes.

What is Iboga?

Iboga is the rootbark of the Central West-African plant Tabernanthe iboga, used traditionally in rites of passage and healing rituals. Ibogaine is the most researched iboga-alkaloid, but related alkaloids might also have therapeutic properties.

Detoxification from opioids with a single large dose of ibogaine has been consistently observed in humans and corresponds to a large body of animal work. Treatment with ibogaine is followed by a period of variable duration of reduced craving for multiple substances including opiates, stimulants, alcohol, benzodiazepines and nicotine. The iboga experience facilitates a profound revision of one’s personal history and life situation and adjustment of one’s behavior and role in the family and society. New Zealand was the first country in the world to accept ibogaine as a prescription medication in 2009.

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What is Ayahuasca?

Ayahuasca is a decoction made from different plants that are found in the Amazon region; the vine Banisteriopsis caapi is boiled together with species such as Psychotria viridis (Chacruna) or Diplopterys cabrerana (Chacropanga) that contain the alkaloid Dimetyltriptamine or DMT. During centuries indigenous peoples have utilized this botanical mix ritually for healing and divination. In the 20th century ayahuasca started to be incorporated as a sacrament in Brazilian syncretic churches that later spread over the whole world.

Today the use of ayahuasca has extended to many parts of the world and, although their is very limited scientific literature demonstrating ayahuasca’s therapeutic properties, a growing body of personal accounts underscore the importance of research into its use as a therapeutic tool for depression, burn-out, mourning, addiction, relational problems, childhood trauma, palliative patient’s fear of death, etc.

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