December 2021 – ALROSA has given a large, newly mined yellow-brown 91.86 carat diamond the name Kyndykan in honour of an Even* folklore heroine. Kyndykan was a little girl who was miraculously found alive 200 years ago by Yakut hunters near the Verkhoyansk Mountains in an ancestral settlement completely wiped out by smallpox.
Kyndykan has become a symbol of the resilience, spiritual strength and unique values of the indigenous peoples of the Far North. The story inspired ALROSA to support a project also named Kyndykan, which aims to draw attention globally to the problem of preserving the traditions and culture of the indigenous peoples.
The Kyndykan diamond has a yellow-brown colour and measures 25х16х22 mm. It was mined in 2021 at one of the alluvial diamond deposits at Diamonds of Anabar, a subsidiary of ALROSA which operates across the vast Arctic territory of Yakutia. The indigenous peoples of the North traditionally inhabited this region. The diamond was found in the Olenyok district, one of the coldest regions in the northern hemisphere.
ALROSA first announced its support for the Kyndykan project in September 2021. This was the latest step in the company’s efforts to preserve the historical values of the indigenous peoples of Yakutia. Since its establishment, ALROSA has been involved in the lives of indigenous peoples, supporting ancestral deer-herding and fishing settlements, training communities in various specialties, creating jobs, providing everything necessary for a fulfilling life, organizing ethnic festivals, and supplying products to remote villages.
Evgeny Agureev, Deputy CEO of ALROSA said: “At ALROSA, we have a great tradition of giving names to newly mined diamonds. On this occasion, we decided to name a diamond mined in the Far North in honour of the little Even heroine Kyndykan and after a wonderful project, which is doing a lot to ensure that voices of indigenous peoples of the North are heard. ALROSA has always admired their resilience and strength of character, rich history and age-old traditions. Our common goal is to preserve all of this for future generations and to tell this story to the world.”
ALROSA actively supports indigenous peoples of Yakutia. The company strives to find a balance between the interests of the state, business and indigenous peoples in order to achieve the sustainable socio-economic development of the region, a better quality of life, and the preservation and development of ethnic cultures. All of this is becoming possible thanks to the DiamondsThatCare initiative. The company allocates 8% of its revenue to this initiative to fund social and environmental projects in its regions of presence.
The company funds nine districts in Yakutia’s “diamond province”, with a strong focus on supporting the day-to-day life of the residents in the most northerly districts. It provides assistance in agricultural and traditional economic activities and finances social events, making a substantial contribution to the region’s development.
ALROSA is trying to popularize Yakutia’s indigenous peoples’ culture and traditions. The company’s culture and sports department include 13 Yakut amateur folk-art groups with over 200 members. ALROSA also promotes ethnic festivals, languages, customs and traditions of the peoples of the North. In 2020, its Diamonds of Anabar subsidiary took part in the launch of an internet portal aimed at preserving the languages and customs of the indigenous peoples of the North.
* The Evens are one of the indigenous peoples of Yakutia