Elvira (centre) visits with friends.
Now that our Mosqoy Ambassadors are back and settled in Peru, we’d like to thank everyone involved in making this program a huge success! Ehbert and Elvira continue to be dedicated volunteers and inspiring mentors to our current Mosqoy students, and we’re so happy to have been able to give them the opportunity to experience life in Canada. Our current Fellowship student, Amanda Yeo, got a chance got catch up with Ehbert and Elvira to chat about their experiences in Canada, and get some updates on their transitions back to life in Peru.
We’ll start with our interview with Elvira, and we’ll be following up shortly with our conversation with Ebhert. Elvira is currently working as our Education and Volunteer Program Coordinator at Mosqoy house, and is a wonderful support to Mosqoy staff and students:
Location: Juice Shop off the Plaza de Armas, Cusco, Peru.
Amanda So I was talking to Ashli [Our program director] and she had asked if I could interview you and Ebert. She had told me that you guys had gone to Canada to study, which sounds like so much fun. She was telling me that you went to the University of Victoria to study. Was it only for one semester?
Elvira Yeah, only for 1…it was for 3 months? Yeah 3 months.
Amanda So what did you study there?
Amanda What are you doing now that you are back in Peru?
Elvira Now I am working …at a small business.
Amanda Are you still involved with Mosqoy then?
Elvira Yeah Sometimes we went to Mosqoy house and help everything. And sometimes we talk about the experience in Canada or about the big experience in Canada. And sometimes we went to Mosqoy house to say “hello!”.
Amanda Is it harder to come back from Canada then back to Peru?
Elvira Yes because it is very different. Canada is very very different. I like Canada but when I came back to Peru, it was very surprise for me because I saw a very different Peru...yeah….it’s very hard for me. Also looking for my work, my job… it is very hard.
Amanda What did you find surprising, like why did you find it so hard to come back?
Elvira Yeah I don’t know, it the people, the place, the weather, very different. Very hard for me
Amanda What do you miss about Canada then?
Elvira My friends, and also my host family, and also the food. A little bit.
Amanda What did you eat in Canada that you really miss?
Amanda There is lasagna here though! (laughs)
Elvira But it is very different. I love lasagne.
Amanda What did you find your most valuable experience while you were there?
Elvira I know different people. I know people who have um…who is rich because I am poor. I don’t have a lot of money but I know people have a lot of money. I don’t know, the culture also. The culture in Canada is very different and the people are very different… friendly..
Amanda How do you think this experience can help you in the future? Do you think it would help you at all or not so much?
Elvira Yeah it helps a lot because it’s very important for my life, this experience .Now when people ask me about Canada I know. I talk about that.
Amanda Do you find that it helps with the students? Because you tell the students about your experience. What do they ask you about Canada then?
Elvira What did you eat in Canada…and what are you doing in Canada.
Amanda They want to know about the food?
Elvira Yeah but I know a lot about the Mosqoy volunteers, NGOs, I know what they’re doing in Canada for Mosqoy students. The Mosqoy volunteers work hard in Canada. And it’s very….and now I know what..I like the work about Mosqoy. It is so hard for them.
Amanda Did you get to stay at their office?
Elvira Yeah I went to their office, two times but we didn’t work here.
Amanda Yeah because you had to study right?
Elvira Yes but we also went to different places for presentations. We talked about Mosqoy and my experience with Mosqoy…you know?
Amanda How many people were in your Mosqoy class?
Elvira Now? 20? Yeah 20.
Amanda I was going to ask because there are so many of you guys, how did they pick who goes to Canada?
Elvira Only people who have a good ..um I don’t how you say.. a good score at the institute and a …how do you say when it’s a good person?
Amanda Yeah it a good person. It’s that they know you have good grades and are good person. They are going to make sure you will do alright and study.
Amanda Did you like your English classes?
Elvira Yes, They were good because we only spoke in English. Every time. Also I know different people and my teacher is so … I don’t know…I miss my classmates and my teacher.
I went to different communities to talk about Mosqoy. When I talk to about Mosqoy. It’s very interesting because when you talk people listen, you know.
Amanda Is there anything else you want to add about your trip to Canada? If there was anything you wanted to tell your Sponsors about your trip to Canada?
Elvira Yeah, for example: Gerry. I miss Gerry. He helped a lot and he told me about the indigenous people. It was very surprising to me because indigenous people are another person. It’s very different because they are like me.
Elvira Also when we went to the school. The schools are very different. Very very different f from Cusco or Ollantaytambo. Because in these schools there are many technologies. There are computers, there are different technologies, but in Ollantaytambo no, only have.. I think, 20 computers for 1000 students. You know it’s very hard and only 20 or 30 computers but in here, every student has one. It’s very different and good in Canada than in Ollantaytambo, Cusco, or Peru.
Amanda Are you going to stay involved with Mosqoy even though you are done the program?
Amanda Do you plan on moving back to Ollantaytambo?
Elvira Yes, only I need to finish my English program here first and then I will go back to Ollantaytambo.
Amanda What will you do when you get back to Ollantaytambo?
Elvira I don’t know maybe work in the hostels or I don’t know
Amanda I guess you’ll find out when you get back
Elvira Yeah but in my community you can work in the farm or something else.
Thanks to Elvira and Amanda for putting together these reflections on the Student Ambassador Program. Be sure to look for Ehbert’s interview, coming soon.