November 1, 2011

Service in Tarica and Huaraz

Three students are volunteering in the city of Huaraz and the nearby village of Tarica.  At over 10,000 feet above sea level, these communities are nestled between the Cordillera Blanca (White Mountains) and the Cordillera Negra (Black Mountains).  The views are magnificent, the sky is a clear blue each morning and the people are shy at first but warm up quickly when they learn about our students and their work.

We visited Samuel and Hannah at the World Vision office in Tarica and learned about the project to which they were assigned.  World Vision is an international, non-denominational organization dedicated to children’s health and well-being (www.worldvision.org).  The staff in Huaraz are gearing up for a campaign to bring about awareness of HIV/AIDS and to promote self-esteem among the children living in villages in the “alturas” (heights) above the valley where Tarica sits.  The campaign will shift into high gear in December and Samuel and Hannah have been asked to assist by developing posters and powerpoint presentations that staff will use when they visit the communities.  The students have also had several opportunities to accompany World Vision staff on visits to villages an hour or more drive from their office.

Benjamin is volunteering at AWI, the Quechua acronym for The Good News Association, part of the Summer Institute of Linguistics funded by the Wycliffe Bible Translators group.  The staff at AWI have recently begun broadcasting weekly Quechua language radio and television shows via their website (www.awiperu.org) and Benjamin has been asked to help improve the lighting, sound and other technical aspects of their programs.  Good thing that Benjamin is majoring in broadcasting.  His experience at the Goshen College radio station WGCS — recently awarded the title “number one college radio station in the nation” —  will come in handy over the next few weeks.

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