“I love going to La Casa de Panchita because everybody cares about me and I learn new things”
Elena, 14 years old, was born in a little town in Apurimac, one of the poorest areas in the Peruvian Andes. By the time she was 10, her mother sent her to Lima, to a relative’s house. There, she did cleaning, cooking and took care of the little children. Everybody treated her as “the help”, not as family. She could barely sleep some hours at night and she did not have enough time to do her homework. One thing she also remembers is how much her employer yelled to her and how little she wanted to talk or express her feelings with people.
In 2010, after four years, Elena moved to her aunt’s house where she feels well treated. Also that year she started coming to La Casa de Panchita.
Elena looks shinny every time we see her at La Casa de Panchita. She is no more the girl who did not want to talk about her family and that was embarrassed about not reading well. With us, she shares stories of her childhood in Apurimac and she is eager to learn about the meal we serve at lunch, the handicraft we make with all the girls or the new games we play on Sundays.
Elena´s native language is quechua. At La Casa de Panchita she works hard to improve her reading and writing skills in Spanish, and currently she has improved her grades at school.
Like Elena, many more girls find in La Casa de Panchita a place in which they are happy and can learn and play.
Thank very much dear GlobalGiving friends for supporting our work with girls and women in domestic service. We appreciate all your contributions.
Dear Global Giving supporters,
Launching our project through Global Giving has been a great success. Everybody is thrilled that in such a short time (April 2011) in the Open Challenge we raised $13,443 and that we won second place in number of donors. Thank you all for your support!
It is a great pleasure to update you on our work. In this first report we want to share our news from May and June:
We were able to hold Sundays full of activities at “La Casa de Panchita”. The girls learned to make handicrafts like a fan and a portrait made out of cardboard, they learned basic math by playing how to buy fruits in the market, and they also shared and discussed about family and values. The women had computer and English classes plus other things. There was also time for nutritious meals.
“I always bring my homework to work at La Casa de Panchita. In June I was number two in my class for the first time!”. Jennifer Salas, 13 years old.
We have been able to provide 24 psychological counseling sessions and 66 sessions of legal advice. Also, our lawyer won two cases in court and as a result domestic workers were paid fair compensation for their work.
A total of 32 visits were made to mothers of children involved in child domestic work (CDW) to follow up on their situation. Some of these children also used our library “My Space to Grow” (located in San Juan de Miraflores) where both, young girls former child domestic workers (CDW) and volunteers, helped the children with their school assignments.
We do not want to finish this update without mentioning that we will celebrate our 22nd anniversary, in memory of Elsa M. Chaney, “the big sister”, who died in July 16th 2000. She was a very important supporter of organizations of domestic workers in Latin America, and she has been our beloved friend.
The celebration will be held Sunday July 17th with girls and women at La Casa de Panchita. Please join in the festivities by following us on twitter @casadepanchita and on facebook http://www.facebook.com/lacasadepanchita We love to welcome new followers and friends.