CONGRATULATIONS to all the Challengers on our first six Charity Challenges of 2011, biking from Guatemala to Honduras, the inaugural Nicaragua Volcano Challenge, Brazil's Chapada Diamantina Challenge , Guatemala's first Caribbean Kayak Challenge, Perú´s Cerani Pass and Ecuador's Volcano Challenge. Nicaragua's second volcano Challenge is set for 3rd-6th November and the third Guatemala Volcano Challenge dates are set for 27th November -2nd December.

Click on the following for our most recent official project reports for Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Perú and Brazil.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Ampi (4500m) starts in Perú

We’re in!! We’ve had our first days at Ampi at 4500m! Due to the remoteness & distance to the community, to start with the Chivay vols will be going up once a week, with a view to increase the number of days. The school has been completely forgotten about due to it’s remoteness with absolutely zero support.

Santiago the teacher & Director, has worked there alone for 5 years, living in a run-down room next to the school with broken windows, no electricity or running water (the whole community, water comes from a stream that at times dries up) and no interaction with anyone other than the children for the whole week.

The former teacher apparently used to drink a lot (there are large alcohol abuse issues in the community) and get into disputes with the parents, and one day ran off with all the books & paperwork and disappeared! The school had no teacher for 6 months until Santiago was sent there!

We’ve just moved into winter here in Peru and the nights are starting to get colder & colder, at Ampi (altitude of 4500m) it’s blimmin freezing! The children all suffer a lot of course from this, especially as they have few clothes & shoes and little in the form of hot nutritious food.

We work with brother & sister Juan (14 yrs old) & Elsa (8 yrs old), and Aleja (12 yrs old) and there’s potential for more children to come as some don’t attend any form of school (they’re sent out to tend/work the herds of llamas, alpacas & sheep all the families raise for meat & wool.). They know more Quechua than Spanish, and Elsa has quite a strong speech impediment. All of them are extremely withdrawn and timid due to no interaction with anyone.

They explained that Santiago had paperwork to do and therefore wasn’t coming back until Monday! But he had left the key to the school with Juan for us to work with them. This we took as a great show of faith in us, and the fact that Juan & Elsa came to school knowing that Santiago would not be there!

Megan & Carla had brought some mate de coca up & bread for them to eat as a breakfast (as highly unlikely they eat breakfast, plus they have to walk at least 35mins in the cold to get to school); Megan worked with Elsa on addition and Carla worked with Juan practising multiplication tables, and word problems involving multiplication.

We then had break and had brought up a football with us, amazing how a ball can break down barriers and get everyone playing together! Juan & Elsa’s uncle happened to pass by and joined us for a game although football at 4500m altitude is tough going!!

We then continued classes and their Uncle asked if he could participate, the more the merrier! We read a story to practice their reading skill – basic, but the school has not one story book for the children to read. They then had to draw an accompanying picture for each page of the story, and thus will eventually create a story book they can take home.

The possibilities are endless.....


How does GVI Phoenix make a difference?

The following film was made in Guatemala, though the message is the same across all GVI Phoenix projects