An update from the Highlands

Posted November 27, 2016 @ 11:21am | by Comunidad

Dearest Supporter:                                November 30, 2016


We have news! But first a little recap.  When we officially became a non-profit after our grain mill start in Paccha, we had a clear mission: providing quality education and nutritious school meals. We were green, but had the sense to harvest quality expertise along the way. We started in Paccha, but added Chaquipampa, Culluhuanca, Hatunpampa, and others along the way.  We let events dictate our timeline.


We have seen increasingly more government participation in the Andean school system, an area historically and vastly underserved. For the past two years, the Ayacucho department has taken over or consolidated our pre-schools one by one. A big hold out was Chaquipampa. There are 25 preschoolers there receiving the best from our Comunidad teachers. They believe the government education is inferior, and it is. After this school year ends we have prepared them to make the transition to governmental control with self-advocacy of their needs. 


Teachers typically live in the city of Ayacucho and travel 4 hours by bus the wee hours on Monday, returning home at the end of the week. A “Friday” teacher is hired by Comunidad to teach M-F, 5 days a week. The parents note their attendance and report back to us. No work, no pay. In contrast, “Wednesday” teachers are common in this region. Government hired teachers are typically on the Wednesday return bus to Ayacucho. The poor, often illiterate parents didn’t know how to empower themselves to fix a corrupt and broken system. After fourteen years of quality education from our dedicated Comunidad teachers that you have supported to teach at their best, the communities are now demanding a 5 day school week from the government. Bravo!!!


We do know for sure that Chawpiwasi and Patawasi, the two most poor and isolated villages, will not receive anything other than an invitation for their students to make an impossible mountain trek to study elsewhere. With your help, we will continue with them next year with a “Friday” teacher, extra books, supplies and food! We are also committed to building both villages a real bathroom.


We believe we have enough funds to cover next year’s education plans. but not anything extra, like two clean and functioning baños. The plan is to start construction at the end of this year. Since we don’t know yet how much money we might need beyond what we already have in the bank, a pop-up fundraiser seems logical. When school starts again in March, we will have the new student count, the baños functioning and an updated budget for the 2017 school year. Your support has transformed Andean family life. Many of you have been with us for over a decade. We are stepping aside when we should, and serving another year where we are needed!


You have spent way too much time improving the lives of children to stop now. Your philanthropic dollars have served such a worthy purpose. We are looking into an opportunity to bring the literacy project closer to home. With so much change in our country, giving children a better future in your own community, is more important than ever. 


A shift is happening, we need your current e-mail address for the progress update! We have to stay connected. One expense we can cut is postage. Please e-mail us just to make sure our database is updated for you.


Abrazos Fuertísimos,



P.S. Photos of a baño before & after

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