There’s no doubt that the last year has been a hard one for everyone, but perhaps most affected have been the children in countries like Peru! Schools have been closed for over a year now, and government guidelines prevented children from leaving their houses for nearly six months last year! 2021 has started children being given more freedom, but schools are still not open and the doors of Picaflor House remain closed. Despite the restrictions, our team has been working hard, trying to help in any way we can!
Over the first three months of 2021, the government’s economic reactivation program has allowed some people to go back to work, but biweekly changes to the rules create a lack of consistency. As a result, local businesses and the tourism industry have yet to really take off again, so our families’ incomes are still irregular. To help support those in most need, we started delivering food baskets last year, and have continued this over the last quarter. Thanks to donations from our generous supporters, we have delivered 89 food baskets to date!
The Start of the School Year
Children across Peru have been on their summer holidays for most of 2021 so far, but the academic year kicked off again on 15th March. Whilst everyone had hoped that schools would open for in-person classes, that date has been postponed yet again. So, our children are back to home-schooling. We know that many of our students struggled to keep up with online classes last year, due to lack of support and access to internet and other materials, so our teachers are back on the phones again to help wherever they can and we are looking into more specific ways we can support them too.
Picaflor House's Doors Opening Soon?
Recognising the difficulty of access, the government is assessing whether rural schools can return to face-to-face classes in April. If so, we will jump at the chance and invite smaller groups of kids to Picaflor House for shorter amounts of time. Luz (the program manager) and the teachers have identified that support with schoolwork and internet access are the children’s most pressing needs, so we’d like to be able to provide these services as soon as possible.
And of course, the sooner the children can play in our playground, take part in sports or outside activities and get their healthy snacks again, the better! In whatever way we are able to open, we will ensure that government health and safety protocols are always observed.
Whatever the next few months bring, we hope to be able to share more progress and good news with you at the end of the next quarter. For now, all that remains is to say a huge THANK YOU to you, our wonderful supporters! Without you, Picaflor House wouldn’t be able to continue supporting the children of Oropesa.