Dear STRIVE-Peru students, interns, parents, and supporters,
First off, we want to extend a huge THANK YOU from all of us at STRIVE and from all the people to whom you helped provide support this summer in Pisac. Between the fundraising that was done before and the hard work done on the ground in Peru, we were able to have a positive, lasting, and sustainable impact on the community. So, thank you and congratulations on a job well done!
As you know, informed philanthropy is a cornerstone of the STRIVE philosophy, so we want to give a clear breakdown of how our groups spent both our person-hours and funds on projects this year. We’ll outline the projects we worked on with the total cost of each and attach a spreadsheet with a budget for all our service work.
Before our first group of high-schoolers arrived, STRIVE staff and college interns hit the ground running. Our group of interns began by learning about service ethics and philosophy, reaching out to local organizations to see where we were qualified and needed, and planning the work to be done the rest of the summer. By the second week of the program, the group had begun a regular schedule of helping as teachers’ assistants at the Tambo de Gozo primary school with a focus on English conversation and Physical Education classes.
STRIVE also began helping a local non-profit with their free after-school English and Art classes. We also offered private lessons to 4 community members who approached us asking for help furthering their English abilities.
Our intern group also participated in a few other smaller projects before the high school group arrived. One of those was working with an organization in Cusco whose goal is to restore Incan ruins in a valley near Cusco. Our group was given a tour of the valley where we learned about the history and vision of the project and then spent a day working to beautify a path through the valley which involved some weeding and other gardening type tasks. The group spent $90.90 on transportation to this project.
Lastly our interns also spent a day working with the Ccochawasi Animal Sanctuary, a small, private rehabilitation center for animals that have been rescued from illegal trafficking. The group divided our labors between helping to clean animal pens, prepare food for the animals, and some painting projects within the facilities. The group spent $116.96 on tools and transportation for these days.
With the arrival of the high school STRIVErs, we first reviewed the same lessons of how to responsibly serve others. While all that was happening, our high school group worked on prepping and preparing for the 3rd Annual STRIVE 5K Road Race in Pisac, another way that STRIVE continues in our mission to promote health and athletics to the region’s teen and adult population.
It was a beautiful day for a run and we were impressed by the strong turnout of runners from Pisac, nearby Cusco, and even a few foreigners who happened to be in town. We also had over 20 niños – aspiring runners under the age of 10 – in the 2nd annual Youth Race. Our group did a great job in planning and setup and it was our smoothest race yet!
Preparations for the race included promotional efforts, meetings with town officials, logistical planning, and early morning race day setup, race stations, and tear down post race.
To put on this fantastic event, the group spent a total of $400.00
The group also got physical at high altitude and showed off their athletic prowess as we helped a local community with the construction of a community center. Our students spent 3 days working in Pampallacta with local skilled laborers who were in charge of the project. They quickly put us to use and we were able to help with tasks that require time and muscle while we left the skilled work to the carpenters. Most of our days were spent hauling adobe bricks, sifting dirt and moving wheelbarrows of dirt to help with leveling off areas outside the building.. It was hard work! But our gang took to it well and made a real visible impact in the progress. In fact, we were eve
n invited back to the community to see the building when it’s completed (currently slotted for an August 2019 finishing date) as well as to work on other projects in the community. We must have done something right!
Mostly, the group contributed sweat and person-hours, but we also supplied the community with some much needed tools for their project. $518.28 for some help with transportation and tools.
Our high school group and intern group spent time working with a local weaving cooperative, who approached us through one of our contacts in Pisac, Maribel, who supplies most of our group with breakfast every morning in town. They were looking for some help with basic English specifically regarding conversations that would happen in a marketplace. They were hoping to improve their English skills and be able to communicate with tourists who visit their community. We spent 4 afternoons there giving English lessons in small groups, role playing different conversations and learning about a fantastic community with many skilled laborers. We also put together cheat sheet booklets for them to use and practice with and the group decided to donate $500 towards a teacher who can continue giving them lessons while our group is gone.
Lastly, as has become tradition, STRIVE hosted our annual “Field Day”: a morning of fun athletic-themed games and activities held at the running track/soccer field of the local public school. STRIVErs split up into small groups, each planning an event (e.g. obstacle course or water balloon toss), setting that up early in the morning, and leading groups of youngsters through the event all day. The day culminated with a free lunch for those who showed up before the infamous STRIVE Mile race for our students, staff, and interns. We had over 40 kids show up and everyone had a great time!
The group spent a total of $116.15 to continue this well-loved great tradition.
In total, the group spent $2,300.02 on the ground.
All in all, it was an incredibly successful summer with a ton of great work put in by everyone. We will continue monitoring all of our projects via our contacts in Pisac and keep everyone updated on how things are going. We can’t wait to get back to Pisac and continue trying to help the community and also continue learning from them.
Please feel free to read over the attached spreadsheet which gives a detailed breakdown of all of our fundraising expenditure over the course of the program. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any questions or comments; we’re happy to answer anything.