“Investing is not the same as spending” - Isabel Baufumé (Founder of Qosqo Maki)
Welcome to Autumn to those in the northern hemisphere - we’ve entered an early rainy season in the highlands of Peru. The past month with AYP has been full of settling in and getting ready for changes headed our way! September started off with picking up the new Q’ente volunteer, Nora. She’s already written a blog about settling into Cusco, and has now held a few weaving meetings on her own with the help of AYP students as translators! Our Kallpa K’oj program is focused on maintaining connection between our students and Quechua culture, and a large part of their volunteer service comes in the form of translation from Quechua to Spanish and vice versa for Q’ente meetings.
Stephanie and Kristina participated in the First Annual Encuentro of community and social educators at the beginning of the month. It was an incredible gathering of organisations focused on community and socially inclusive development, and was quite interesting to hear about challenges each of us experience in our work. The quote at the beginning of this blog was in one of the opening lectures from the conference, and it highlights the work Mosqoy does beautifully. We are investing not only in the future of each of our students, but in their families and ultimately, their communities. We were thankful for the opportunity to participate in the conference and share experiences with other organisations! Thanks to Pasa la Voz for their efforts in organising this fantastic event, and including Mosqoy in it!
In September, we also had three Mosqoy 6 students begin their studies with all the energy and enthusiasm in the world! Fernando began his tourism studies at Khipu, and Nataly began her studies in international business administration also at Khipu. Deniss was successful in entering UNSAAC, though not in the program she wanted. Her plan is to work hard in her current program of literature, to make the switch next semester to her dream field of archaeology. Kelly is still working on getting into medical school at UNSAAC and will be writing an exam in April to get in, and Orlinda will begin her preparatory course at Khipu in January to enter the computer science program in April.
We are also so happy to share that both Elizabeth and Lisbeth from Mosqoy 3 have completed all the requisites to receive their official professional designation in international business administration and accounting, respectively. Kristina attended their ceremony at Khipu, where they received both their title and a medal, and at the end we all toasted their success. Just as a point of clarification, not all students who graduate from their programs receive the professional designation. It requires much more effort and preparation to receive the professional designation - both Elizabeth and Lisbeth have spent the past year working through the process to achieve this.
Moving into October, there will be many exciting new changes and activities. First, the students came together to plan a pollada (kind of like a chicken bbq) for the elections on October 5th - they bought and prepared chicken, potatoes, and fixings for salad to sell to the community of Ollantaytambo. AYP volunteers were incredibly impressed at this effort from the students, that didn’t include any help in organising from program leadership. They worked hard the day before to prepare, and stood outside and sold every last bit of chicken, potatoes, and salad to the community. The funds raised from this activity will be going towards our annual chocolatada (christmas event where we travel to a community and serve hot chocolate and hand out toys to children), which we will begin planning this month!
Meet Deniss! She successfully got into UNSAAC (the national public university); the selection process for the university is extremely competitive and has an acceptance rate of about 0.1%, but Deniss was ambitious and determined to get in; she succeeded in entering the Literature program. She plans to switch into Archaeology in her second semester. Since she was a child she has been fascinated by Incan tales and never forgot her expeditions with her neighbours who worked as archeologists and took her to the sites they were working at. History, cultural studies and sciences are her passion, which makes archaeology a strong choice for her. Even though she counts studying as one of her hobbies, Deniss also enjoys reading, listening to music and playing soccer or volleyball in her free time.
If you are interested in supporting Deniss’ education, or want to know more about our sponsorship program, please contact Kristina at email@example.com.