Thursday, 18 December 2008

Trip to Huancayo

Last Saturday I travelled up to Huancayo, one of Peru's Andean regions, to visit a project being run by NGO, El Shaddai, in conjunction with The Peru Children's Trust. I was able to take part in the charity's Christmas celebrations and meet many of the children and young people who are benefitting from their projects. We also visited a few of the children's homes and saw the conditions they were living in (see photos).

Both The Peru Children's Trust and its Peruvian branch, El Shaddai, appear to have a great deal in common with The Colour of Hope. Their work aims to raise the standards of living for poor children and young people in the Huancayo area, improving their housing, funding healthcare, enabling their education and providing family guidance and teaching. The team has recently built an extensive set of workshops, helping the young people to learn vocational skills such as hairdressing, welding, carpentry, dressmaking, cooking and grain milling. This support will hopefully enable the young people to find employment or set up their own small businesses in the near future.

The Colour of Hope trustees offered to share our training courses with El Shaddai so that they can extend the support they are already providing their young people, helping them to find work, and perhaps setting up a microcredit scheme. We will maintain good links with the El Shaddai team and hope that there will be further opportunities to work together in the future.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

The Colour of Hope Birthday Fun

On Thursday, 4th December The Colour of Hope celebrated 5 different birthdays - Christian (2 years old - Katherine's son), Luis (4 years old, Natali's son), Abraham, Natali and my own.

We united young people from all four groups, together with their children, and it was an excellent opportunity for everyone to share experiences and mix with their peers. Great fun was had during pass the parcel and of course the birthday cake always goes down well!

Afterwards we went out to the cinema and saw Madagascar 2 which was enjoyed by the children and adults alike.