Pictured above: Clayda
As an organisation working to support vulnerable young people in Peru, there is nothing better than hearing from past beneficiaries that our support has had a lasting impact on them. Recently, LAFF had the opportunity to reconnect with Clayda Paucar Vilca—a former beneficiary from one of our partner organisations, Mosqoy.
Clayda is a proud member of Peru’s indigenous Quechua community. The Quechua people have historically faced severe marginalisation and they continue to suffer from unequal access to vital services such as healthcare and education in modern-day Peru, with less than 5% of Quechua youth pursuing studies at universities and technical institutions. Mosqoy is a grass-roots organisation working to change this; they strive to empower the Quechua people by improving their access to education and employment opportunities.
Mosqoy sponsored Clayda’s higher education after she finished high school. In addition to covering her tuition fees, she was offered accommodation in Casa Mosqoy—a dormitory for students to live in during term-time, where they receive access to pastoral support and opportunities for personal development. Clayda has fond memories of attending female empowerment workshops hosted by LAFF, where she and her female colleagues were taught that women are capable of anything. Thanks to Mosqoy’s support, she was also able to get a job at a cafe to cover her living expenses while she was a student. In addition to the professional assistance she received, Clayda spoke to us about how her time at Mosqoy encouraged her to be proud of her Quechua heritage:
“A lot of the time when we leave our communities, we are embarrassed to even speak Quechua because we face a lot of discrimination. But at Mosqoy, they taught us to value our culture and our origins, to feel proud and confident of where we came from.”
Mosqoy encourages its beneficiaries to give back to their families through financial support or by volunteering their time and knowledge, so the skills they have learned can be passed on to others in the Quechua community. Clayda also emphasised that the indirect benefits of her education extend beyond her own career. Because of her experiences, her mother can aspire for better futures for all her children and she is determined to see Clayda’s two younger brothers complete their own studies.
“My mother tells them, ‘Look at your sister! She has finished school, she has received support and she already has better opportunities…’”
During her time at Mosqoy, Clayda was incredibly grateful for the volunteers who dedicated their time and energy to the development of a community that was not their own. Inspired by this, she has gone on to work for an NGO where she tutors and supports children in vulnerable situations similar to those which she herself faced as a youth. In the future, she hopes to open her own import business so she can support her younger brothers as they pursue their own education. You can click here to reads Clayda’s full interview!
With your help, we can ensure that Mosqoy is able to continue supporting Quechua youth like Clayda. We are participating in the Big Give Christmas Challenge—a match-funding campaign running from 30th November to 7th December. During this week, every donation we receive will be DOUBLED! If you would like to support us, we would be incredibly grateful. The link to donate can be found below.