What is Project Sacred Valley?
In Pisac, Peru, the average household income is 1,540 Soles ($603 CAD) per month and household expenses exceed 2,000 ($791 CAD) Soles per month. This discrepancy results in low education graduation rates, as a by-product of the poverty families are faced with. With the local schools focusing on teaching heritage, there is a lack of viable post-secondary opportunities. Children abandon their education and travel to external communities to earn a living to help support their families. The volume of students in early grades far exceeds the mere three to five students in grades nine to eleven.
To address quality education and poverty, Enactus Ryerson created Project Sacred Valley (PSV). We partnered with Kusi Kawsay, the local school, to create a sustainable solution that addresses both needs. Our solution incorporates the roots of Andean culture through the creation of a sustainable organic garden, and quality education through an integrated learning experience.
The organic garden provides the students and the community with access to fresh, local produce, and sustainable employment for five graduated students. PSV produced ten certified business modules which are used to teach students in grades one to four ideation, and grades five to eight business acumen. Kusi Kawsay turned these modules into a co-op integrated learning experience in the garden. Students are now learning valuable entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills, and have the option of entrepreneurship as a viable career path.
Kusi Kawsay acquired a new piece of land in 2017 called Wayakan. This land has been curated to produce certified organic quinoa. Our friends in Peru are currently in the harvesting process. Our on-ground liaisons are ideating programs to facilitate on this land, we are looking forward to supporting them during this process.
We are currently in the process of graduating Project Sacred Valley and hope to have this successfully completed by December 2018!
Aneesa is the Project Manager of Project Sacred Valley (PSV). She is in her last year at Ryerson in the Global Management Studies program.This is her second year with Enactus Ryerson in the same position. She joined Enactus because she loved helping others. When researching student groups to join, Enactus was the only group that stood out to her because of the difference students could make in another person’s life in another country! She is a result- driven individual, and constantly admires the content produced by all members of this team. She is truly looking forward to bringing PSV to its graduation later this year. As we have hit all milestones on this journey it’s time to let our friends in Peru go. A sad but exciting few months are ahead!