Sunday, May 16, 2010

Notes on Peru: Barrio's

Peru, just out of communism is still struggling as a country to pull its people out of sever poverty. Jobs are being created but not quick enough.
An organization that is at work there is
Project New Hope International.
One of the best days of my trip was to go into one of the barrios with two of the organizations directors.
A barrio is referred to as a district or community of people that are living on top of landfill areas in the outskirts of the town.

How the barrio system works in Trujillo is sad yet hopeful.
The city is ever expanding from the center out. If you draw imaginary concentric circles around the city's core you eventually come upon a 7th, 6th, 5th, generation barrio, all the way to the outskirts which would be considered the 1st.
These are pictures of a first generation barrio.

The family, usually women and children have come out of the Andean mountains in hopes of finding work in the city. The government has set up a system where a small (approx 15'x15') plot of land is given to them.
The concept is like homesteading, you develop your home and you get to stay.
The houses are created out of anything found; cardboard, plastic, twin, reed.

Eventually they begin adding adobe brick, maybe a found window, a plywood door and a small plant out front to beautify their home.

Over time the homes being to grow into each other. Businesses are created by entrepreneurial spirits and a community is formed.
The first year the government drives by with a water truck once a week and families collect water in whatever they have gleaned.

The second year, a community water station is built.
Third year, electricity is dropped in and a few main roads are paved.

Fourth fifth, and sixth years more roads are paved, trees planted and a park is created.

Now the barrio has begun to blend the boundary's and has become a part of the ever growing city.

The people that I met were wonderful. Cheerful, hopeful, and beautiful. They proudly shared their homes and posed for photos.
Kids were as kids are, giggly, playful and happy.

So, now I'm working on a project to work with the organization to bring some textile jobs to these mothers.
Seeing all these photos again, just reinforces how much I want to go back!


Pam Aries said...

It is amazing t osee these photos..and the houses made from all kinds of stuff... Very resourceful indeed!

Dita Maulani said...

What a lovely work you have there! I can't wait to see those mother's handmade from textile they got.

Bohemian said...

What a Blessing your work will be there to bring Hope and a way for creative Women there to have a way to begin their small business and an outlet for their work and Art so that the cycle of poverty can be ended as they prosper!

Dawn... The Bohemian

Robert said...


I will be traveling down to Trujillo Peru with Project New Hope International and Water for Our World. I look forward to the time we will be spending down there and connecting with the people of Trujillo. I do not know what to expect... but I hear it is best to have no expectations and enjoy the time. Thanks for posting this site and for the pictures. We leave next week for Peru and I can't wait.