The mobile library creates access to books
With mass vaccination programs starting to take effect in the US, the UK and Europe, life has been returning to "normal" and it’s easy to think that the pandemic is “over”. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for the countries we work in. However, things are looking up, especially in Peru and we’ve been able to continue supporting our communities in both countries.
Despite a slow start with vaccinations in Peru, case numbers have been dropping consistently for a while now, and the government has changed the rules to give people more freedom, while maintaining distancing and mask usage. That means that we've been able to do much more in the communities again!
Picaflor House: These last few months were busy for Picaflor House! We had to move to a new property, as the family we’ve been renting from for the last 10 years weren’t able to extend our lease any further. We were sad to leave, but the new place is bigger and has more space for the children to play and for us to expand! Schools are still closed, but outdoor activities are allowed to operate, so having built a toilet block and roofed outdoor space, we were finally able to invite our children back to Picaflor House! For safety reasons, the children are coming for two hours at a time, in groups of 20. While longer would, of course, be better, it’s enough time for the kids to let off some steam in the playground and get some help with their homework from our teachers.
Picaflor House Mobile Library: We realized that there is a need for education outreach in many of the rural communities outside Cusco. Not only are schools closed, but most families in these places don’t have computers or internet and home (and some villages don’t even have mobile data!) so receiving and handing in homework has been difficult. We ran a pilot mobile library day back in May, to take books, teachers and other learning resources to children in two rural villages and it was a roaring success. We are now seeking funds to set up a permanent mobile library, which will offer access to books and help children catch up with school, while schools are still closed, as well as once they open again.
PAWS Mobile Veterinary Clinic: This project has been fully operational since April and our team has been hard at work. We continued registering animals and delivering basic healthcare, as well as starting our neutering program. By the end of our first quarter in July, we had registered and administered routine treatments to 1,376 animals, administered 180 vaccine doses and sterilized nearly 100 dogs and cats. We have now started revisiting animals for their second quarterly health checks and treatments, while continuing to neuter as many animals as possible. Read more in our quarterly report (link below).
While Cambodia has made a great start to its vaccination program, with 45% of the population now vaccinated, the country is still struggling to control case numbers. Case numbers are particularly high in rural areas, where vaccination programs are yet to really take off. The safety of our children, their families and the community is our main priority, as always, but we have been finding safe ways to continue supporting them.
For most of this time, we’ve been able to invite the Helping Hands students to school in small groups, so they can pick up homework packets and have a quick workout with the sports team. Our sports field is big enough that 20 children can exercise while maintaining distancing protocols and mask usage. Our team has also been able to continue the food program, either having a cooked breakfast ready for the children when they arrive to pick up their homework, or sending them home with fresh fruit and vegetables from our garden, along with other nutritious supplies.
We were also able to distribute this year’s school uniforms, so everyone’s ready once the schools eventually open. Concern was mounting about the additional waste created by disposable masks, so we also made sure all our students have reusable fabric ones.
Patience is proving to be a virtue everywhere - but particularly in Cambodia - and everyone is maintaining good spirits and making the best of things.
Thank you for your continued support of Globalteer's project around the world!
Helping Hands students ready for school!
Pre-op checks for a female dog ready to be spayed
Younger children play games at Picaflor House