Julieth Paola Pushaina Epiayú, born in the municipality of Barranca, Guajira, in northern Colombia, is the first indigenous woman NCO in the Colombian Army. And the image of her with it’s Wayúu ethnic dress adapted to the Army uniform, has caused a sensation on social media.
The 25-year-old third corporal in the Army has done social work in her community since she was part of the institution.
“Today I feel very happy because I have the honor and happiness of bringing a little detail to my children in the community with my National Army, with the Juan José Rondón No. 2 Mechanized Cavalry Group and with my Integral Action Battalion” The officer said in an article published on the official page of the Colombian Military Forces in 2020.
The Department of La Guajira, in northern Colombia where the Wayúu indigenous community resides, is one of the poorest in the country. Due to its desert geographic condition, in a large part of its territory there is a lack of water and access to basic public services.
In this area, the indigenous people live off their own farm work and raise animals for their subsistence. And in that environment, the now Army noncommissioned officer, Julieth Paola Pushaina Epiayú, was born.
In her community, the so-called “guajiras blankets” are the typical clothing of women in their daily lives. That is why the clothing adapted to his status as a member of the Army has attracted so much attention.