Our storyIn 2010, a group of friends from university, currently professionals in the area of development communication dedicated their internship to a social project in the community of Tankarpata. At the end of the year, the project became a non-profit civil association, known as « CooperarPerú »
For five years, COOPERARPERU has been working to reduce poverty in its community of Tankarpata! We work with the families in the community who do not have access to traditional education, clean drinking water, healthcare services and social services.
For example the program YANAPASUNCHIS, which in Spanish means “Ayudaremos” (We will help) focuses on education.
The objective of that program goes by three pillars:
- Reinforce the development and academic performance of our children
- Provide appropriate information/teaching regarding health/hygiene
- Emphasize personal fulfillment and promote an appropriate community development through well-being activities and social service access.
Cooperar Peru aim to improve the resources and livelihoods for the community of Tankarpata through education, health and community development. Some of our specific activities include:
EDUCATION (learning together)
° Support and academic reinforcement: that area is created in order to avoid academic failure, to try to reduce the lack of attention and to improve academic performance and methods of study of children. This is a project which combines academic and social aspects, since it is an area where children can personally develop through various dynamics and activities.
° Reunions with mothers: These informative reunions take place once a month. We try to give families the main information and useful tools to prevent and fight against the various common diseases. It is mostly due to the lack of nutrition and personal hygiene ( intestinal parasites, lice, flea…)
° Taking habits of hygiene: everyday, children have a special area in the Support Center to be able to wash their teeth and their hands. Every Monday, we help children to cut their nails. Sometimes, there is a time for washing their hair or for nitpicking.
° Direct aid to families with specific problematic regarding Health: intervention at home and accompaniment to different institutions.
° Working with institutions: our organization made contact with different institutions (Cusco Medical Assistance) and organizations (ONG Amauta, ONG Cenprodic, Misión Quechua, Enigma Perú) in order to obtain basic things for the community development.
° Reunion with families: area in which different problems are treated with families. Mothers can also share their concerns regarding family education and other topics.
° Psychological work with children and families: we work with children with various working group activities while with parents, we organize reunions and visits at home.
° For a better life condition, it is also very important to get a waste collection service and an access to drinking water.
The volunteer program YANAPASUNCHIS works with volunteers from around the world and with young graduated students with different profiles. We want to develop a social voluntary service for children who face problems related to education and social development.
Creating awareness towards solidarity
2. Developing intercultural bonds between volunteers and children
3. Volunteers have the opportunity to develop their professional skills during the activities
4. Promoting the personal development of the children and the volunteers
5. Support children in their acquisition of skills and aptitudes through learning and entertainment
TYPES of voluntary services
Our voluntary service embraces two areas: Education and Health. Moreover, volunteers can also help in administration, communication and organize weekly activities.
REQUESTED CONDITIONS for volunteers
COMMITMENT: Volunteers who decide to join our program need to be motivated to achieve their mission
INITIATIVE: Volunteers have to be independent and decisive enough to take initiatives
NO PRECONCEIVED IDEAS: Volunteers need to understand that working with people from a different culture demands a lot of open-mindedness. They have to leave behind prejudices and their cultural habits as they will encounter many differences and they will have to adapt.
PATIENCE and TOLERANCE: CooperarPerú lives thanks to your ideas, your wish to achieve a goal and your suggestions to improve the organization. Yet, you will have to act with sensibility and patience so that your experience is as positive as possible.
KNOWLEDGE OF SPANISH: We strongly recommend volunteers to have at least basic knowledge of Spanish in order to facilitate the interaction with children and to better communicate with the coordinator and other volunteers.
Community of Tankarpata, located at an altitude of 3380 meters, at distance of 20 minutos from the center of Cusco.
We work on the project Aprendiendo Juntos (Leaning together) from Monday to Friday from 3pm to 6pm. Free time on Saturday and Sunday.
It is also very important to dedicate time to the preparation of all the coming activities. Each Friday, all the volunteers and coordinators meet in the « Caja Magica » in order to organize the program of the following week.
SCHEDULE OF THE WEEK
The following program may be updated based on organizational or climatic constraints.
Monday: Art & Culture workshops
Tuesday: Languages and reading
Wednesday: Communication and Mathematics
Thursday: Theatre & Improvisation
Friday: Danse & Body Expression
Saturday: Free day (once a month, a field trip is organized with the children)
Sunday: Free day
The social enterprise for Cooperar Peru is La Caja Magica Hostal, where most of our volunteers stay while they work with us. It is cheap accommodation with breakfast, wifi, hot showers and connections with like-minded people.
Further details on La Caja Magica can be found here -
Donation by choice - your time and skills are more valuable to us
POINTS to bear in mind when working with our children:
Most of the children have grown in precarious situation. They may lack motivation to study and act properly at school, they may struggle to be obedient and follow instructions.
In the community of Tankarpata, some families do not get along, some parents face drinking issues and there is a lot of violence. Consequently, many children may have inappropriate behavior. In order to help them, we have to understand their reality without judging them.
Children need activities and workshops to reinforce their self-esteem and their communicative and social aptitudes. Many of them have trouble to express themselves in public and to communicate with others, due to their shyness and to their lack of self-confidence. The aim of the project is to help the children improving their quality of life, with understanding and tolerance.
The work is not easy. Therefore, our volunteers have to be independent and determined to take initiatives and help as much as possible.
Be aware that your help is very important for our organization. Your ideas and the activities you plan to do will help our children to improve their learning.
Our main recommendation is not to come with preconceived ideas. To discover better another culture, you have to be open-minded and tolerant. Adapt yourself to the situation and enjoy as much as possible !
Donations of food, personal items (toothpaste, toilet paper etc), clothes and books are valuable and always appreciated!