Seven students are serving in Chanchamayo, a province located on the eastern side of the Andes, where the the mountains begin to descend into the Amazon. This area, known as ‘high jungle’ or ‘eyebrow of the jungle’, is well-known for its citrus and coffee production and is home to waterfalls, cloud forests, and an abundance of wildlife.
Tessa, Rachel and Talia are living in the town of San Ramón. Tessa is working at
Clínica Elera, a private clinic that offers a wide variety of medical services and health screenings. Rachel works at Puesto de Salud Naranjal, a small public health clinic in the more rural town of Naranjal. Talia is working at INABIF, a government-run center supporting at-risk children, adolescents and seniors.
Pamela and Lydia live a short drive away in the city of La Merced. Pamela is assisting in a 2nd grade classroom at
Institución Educativa Capelito, a public primary school. Lydia is working at Fundo San José, a nature reserve and lodge dedicated to conservation and sustainable tourism.
Harrison and Aidan are living in San Miguel, an Asháninka community about an hour drive from La Merced that welcomes visitors to live with them. The Asháninka are the largest indigenous group in the Amazonian region of Perú. Harrison and Aidan teach English to students in the community’s primary and secondary school.
Much of Tessa’s work involves doing occupational physicals.
Tessa prepares to take a patient’s blood pressure.
Tessa does vision testing as well as auditory testing.
Tessa poses with her co-worker, Jenny. Jenny has been a host mom for several Goshen students.
Tessa and Jenny record new patient information.
Tessa draws a patient’s blood.
Tessa cleans an injury.
Tessa is surrounded by host mom, Consuelo, dad, Miguel, sister, Antuane and brother, Rodrigo.
Rachel stands outside of Puesto de Salud Naranjal, a public health post in the small town of Naranjal, about 20 minutes from San Ramon.
Rachel works at the front desk and checks in new patients.
Rachel looks for a patient’s file.
Rachel checks weight and vital signs as part of patient intakes.
Rachel takes a temperature.
In her spare time, Rachel has become an expert cottonball roller.
Rachel poses with Dr. Raziel Parraga, Posta Naranjal’s doctor.
Rachel also works with Don Lucio, who is a long-time medical assistant and office manager at Posta Naranjal.
Rachel poses with host Dad, Jose Luis, and host mom, Marleni.
Talia stands outside of INABIF (Comprehensive National Program for Family Wellbeing).
Children at INABIF are served two meals a day — breakfast, and either lunch or early supper, depending on their school day schedule.
Talia poses with Duralia and Loreli, two of her co-workers.
Talia works with a group of 10-15 adolescents in this classroom, helping them with homework, as well as playing games and chatting with them in the mornings before they go to school in the afternoons.
Two of Talia’s young friends at INABIF come in for hugs.
Talia poses with host mom, Noemi, and sister, Leslie.
Lydia spends her days on the 43 hectares of land owned by Fundo San José.
This bamboo is part of a reforestation project at Fundo San José. It is being used to prevent erosion and landslides, and to act as a marker on the edges of the property.
Lydia shows some of the bamboo saplings that she has prepared for planting on the property.
Lydia poses with José, one of her coworkers.
Lydia shows off her chainsaw skills.
Lydia and her supervisor, Patrick, lead us on a hike around the property.
On the way we passed this giant Potoque tree. Its massive root system keeps the surrounding land from eroding.
Lydia and Patrick try to help Leah and Aaron spot one of the many bird species that live in the forest.
We climbed to one of several lookouts on the property. This one overlooks the city of La Merced.
After the hike, Lydia, Leah and Aaron enjoy some carambola (starfruit) juice made from carambolas picked right off the tree behind them.
Lydia poses with host mom, Rosemary, brother, Esteban, dad, Adolfo, and sister, Valery.
Pamela is working at Escuela Capelito, a primary school with over 500 students.
Pamela’s classroom has 29 students.
Pamela helps students follow today’s math lesson.
Pamela stands outside the 2nd grade classroom where she works.
Pamela poses with host dad, Jose Jorge and host mom, Marleni, at her family’s coffee business.
Aidan’s host uncle gives us a ride up to San Miguel in his moto taxi.
Harrison and Aidan wait with friends and family for the welcome reception to begin.
Frank Dither, right, coordinates visits to the community.
Harrison’s uncle and host dad perform traditional Ashaninka music.
Harrison’s host brothers perform a song for us.
Aidan and Harrison stand outside one of the classrooms where they teach English. Their students range in age from 3 years old to adolescents.
Harrison sits on the porch outside his bedroom.
Frank leads us on a walk, ending with a great view overlooking the village and surrounding landscape.
Frank and Willy pose for the camera.
We take a look inside Harrison’s host family’s home.
Aidan sits on his bed, complete with mosquito net.
Aidan shows us his shower.
Aidan’s host mom prepares us a lunch of cupte, rice and yuca.
This achiote plant grows outside of Aidan’s home. Its seeds have a bright red pigment that is used to make the face markings that are part of Ashaninka traditional dress.
Aaron and Harrison’s niece, Samantha, cuddle some puppies born just before Aidan and Harrison arrived.
Aidan stands outside his host family home, with mom, Irma, and sister, Milagros.
Harrison poses with host mom, Ana, dad, Teofilo, sister, Celina, and niece, Samantha.
The group enjoys a meal together in La Merced.