In honor of our 2020 resolution to create a more sustainable international impact, Lift Our Planet is proud to announce the Lift a Village program launching in southern Peru this summer. By dedicating additional time and resources to a single region, we plan to influence a dramatic improvement on residents’ quality of life. We’ve built this program with the assistance of local leadership, our corporate partners, and in-country staff who identified the immediate needs of the village and the long-term impact our service trips would have on community development in the region.
Our First Trip to the Village
On our first trip to the village, Lift Our Planet founder, Phil, and our Peru coordinator, Bryan, noted what would later become the first in a string of several projects: a condemned school building with a yard completely overtaken by free roaming cattle. Because of the unstable state of the structure – including a falling roof and compromised exterior – classes have not been held in the building for years, and students walk several miles each day to a neighboring village to learn.
The president of the community, Grimaldo Phuyo, has welcomed outside aid to improve the conditions of the village. Working alongside local leadership, the village’s residents – 40 families in all – have offered to host volunteers for the project to ensure we’re able to make the most of our time there. This marks the first Lift Our Planet trip in which volunteers will be staying with host families, providing a unique insight into the culture and impact of service.
With the help of a licensed contractor and our corporate partners, LOP volunteers will be replacing the roof of the school, making repairs to the interior and exterior structure, and constructing cattle fencing around the property so that students have the opportunity to play in a safer and more hygienic environment outdoors. By the end of the summer, the village will be able to resume classes in the school.
The Future of the Program
Unlike other Lift Our Planet trips, we intend to visit the same village year after year to continually contribute to identified opportunities for improvement. Our hope is to expand this project to include other opportunities such as teaching and agricultural development. Over time, we intend to expand the program to neighboring villages and other countries.